WOW! That's basically the only word I've had this weekend. Most of our teams have had an incredibly challenging last month prior to this event and between absences, quitters, injuries and general forgetfulness it's been a tough road - but boy did you all deliver on the day.
We took the decision earlier in the season to combine our two junior teams to ensure everyone got adequate coaching focus and everyone was given the chance to develop their stunts and tumbles in particular. We're really happy with this as we've seen so many athletes flourish. Storm has been plagued by attendance and timekeeping issues which hugely reduced their full team training to only twice this term! Despite this you will see from the event DVD that they were able to learn and perform a complex routine to a high standard. This is especially impressive when you consider that nearly half the team had never competed before.
Something spectators might not be aware of is that the warm up facilities at this event very far less than ideal. At no point did they have the space or time to do a full run of the routine - even just for spacing - and despite this they did a fantastic job on the floor. We're especially proud that multiple athletes hit brand new stunt and tumble skills on the floor for this routine include multiple standing and running handspring skills.
Storm were outmatched in their division by teams with much older and more experienced athletes but none-the-less the entire coaching staff are exceptionally proud of their work and we see this as an ideal starting off point for many of these athletes to gain the required skills over the summer for next seasons' tryouts.
Supreme dealt with quite possibly the worst final practice before a competition our program has ever experienced dealing with an upsetting injury which called a halt to training for over an hour and meant that a valuable member of the team wasn't able to compete. (This after having to replace 2 athletes a fortnight before). With 15 minutes left to practice, another athlete stepped in to the spot and the team executed two beautiful run throughs before the session ended. Naturally the evenings' events left many feeling uneasy about competing.
On the day - the team pulled together and performed with near perfection. This included multiple athletes throwing new tumbles on the comp floor for the first time. Their division comprised a whooping 17 teams (the biggest of the whole competition). Despite this incredible challenge - Supreme left the competition with a 4th Place trophy. What is even more exciting - and should make every member of Supreme ridiculously proud is that if you consider the routine score prior to the 1.5points of infractions recieved - Supreme would have placed 2nd! This is an astonishing achievement and we couldn't be more proud.
Of all the cheer teams our program has ever had - Samurai seems to have had the most difficult time. For some reason they've always be faced with even more adversity than all the other teams. Having competed over the last two seasons - the team was yet to hit and be truely proud of a full routine and they also approached this competition knowing it was the last time the team name Samurai would be going on the floor.
Samurai had to replace 3 (of 15) athletes just 3 weeks ago. 1 of whom went into a level 3 flyer role having never flown before. The whole team pulled together to ensure that this final run was the best possible send off for Samurai and they didn't dissappoint.
With so many members pushing for new tumble skills we were deeply proud to seeing athletes executing beautiful skills for the first time including tucks and flicks. The routine was performed nearly flawlessly but despite how proud everyone was - there was an assumption that other teams would most likely have higher difficulty and tumbles and hence outscore us.
As awards were called and the announcer confirmed that Samurai hadn't gotten 3rd - pretty much the whole team got a sense of 'Oh well, we tried our best', and then suddenly they were announced as second. All we've been able to say about it is that it feels like first it means so much.
"Superstars Samurai, a cut above the field. Now our passion, dedication is about to be revealed."
Strive have been working together for nearly two terms but issues with attendance and focus while at training put even the idea of them competing at risk. Despite the difficult sessions they've had - in the last three weeks the whole team has shown so much commitment and focus that they were able to create a difficult and highly technical level 1 routine - then make it look easy.
Strive performed an near perfect routine showcasing excellent technique, gorgeous flexibility and strong dual basing skills. The judges loved their routine and performance so much they were rewarded with 1st place out of a division of 9 teams. We couldn't be prouder - coach Cailigh cried...a lot.
Sage is another team that has dealt with adversity in the last couple weeks. They lost 2 of 5 members and we had to rearrange their group and bring in new athletes. Then one of the new athletes suffered an injury and as a result this team had no more than 3hrs together to pull this exceptionally difficult routine together. As coaches - we believe in challenging our athletes and so we weren't prepared to lower the difficulty to make it easier to learn. And we're glad we didn't.
Sage performed calmly and expertly and managed to tie with the score of Strive exactly with both teams earning 131.9 out of 150. The level of team work, maturity and performance qualiy evident in these ladies was the key to their clean performance and their 1st place trophy.
A team that has been working diligently for nearly two terms, we demand exceptional things from Stride. They perform their routine (which is very difficult) with such ease that it makes us think we need to make it even harder (something we will be doing in the next couple weeks).
Stride pick their flyer up at the start of the routine and don't put her down for nearly the whole thing. They are using difficult and unique grips throughout to make the transitions possible and they take every peice of feedback on board and apply it quickly. We are very proud of all your hard work.
Stride earned 3rd place at this event in a division of 12 teams and only 0.8 points behind 2nd place. Make no mistake - they're hungry to show you all what they can acheive in the next three weeks.
After a fantastic performance at BCA Nationals that earned them a European Summit bid - Soldiers have been working on increasing their skills and improving their performance. We've added so much more difficulty and complexity to the routine and yet the team went out there and were amazing. It's difficult competing against teams who are almost all 13-14yrs old with our age range...but it allows us to do a whole range of tricks and partnering skills that many teams couldn't possibily.
The ladies were rewarded for their hard work and dedication with 1st place...and coach Cailigh cried...again.
"No fear, no doubt, I'll provide the answer."
Smackdown - Senior Pom - 9 Athletes aged 14-37yrs
One of our most dedicated and hard working teams - Smackdown got straight back to training after BCA Nationals (where they earnt 3rd place and a European Summit bid) looking to make their routine even better and their execution even sharper. They have all truly embraced the character of elite level, pro dancers and radiate this while they perform. It's intoxicating.
These amazing women competing in a division of 11 teams and not only came away with 1st place but beat 2nd place by a massive 9.9points. (Coach Cailigh cried...but so did almost everyone this time.)
"Living on the front row. Welcome to the freakshow."
Coaches and Assistant Coaches
The success of this weekend is so enormously down to you. You hard work, dedication, love and support make Superstars what it is. Next season as we bring full-time paid coaches on staff we are going to be unstoppable.
Parents, Family and Supporters
Without you are athletes wouldn't be the people they are and we know we wouldn't get to work with them. Thank you all so much for the way your supported throughout the weekend and thank you for choosing Superstars as your cheerleading, dance, stunt and tumble home. We consider it an absolute pleasure working with your children and hope to see them grow, learn and succeed for many years to come.
A final note...
Please don't anyone try to steal the trophies or the gaurd dog will get you!