24 January 2006

Wallace State Cheerleaders, 2006 National Champions

HANCEVILLE, AL-- Back on top--the Wallace State Cheerleaders are again National Champions.

“Everyone at Wallace State is extremely proud of our cheerleaders,” said President Vicki Hawsey. “We commend each and every one of them on their hard work and dedication in reaching their goal of becoming 2006 National Champions. They exemplify everything we value in our student-athletes.”

Competing at the UCA National Cheerleading Championships at the Walt Disney World complex in Orlando, Fla. this month, the Wallace State Community College-Hanceville squad performed a near perfect routine to secure their position at the top.

“We were as close to perfect as you can get,” said Wallace State coach Rob Metcalf.

Wallace State earned 435.5 out of a possible 450 points. “That’s phenomenal,” he said. “It may be the highest score any team has ever had.”

The University of Kentucky, competing in the four-year division, was the only school other than Wallace State not to have a drop.

“We felt great about our performance,” said Metcalf. “We had just one little bobble, but you never know what judges are going to do.”

Each squad has one shot to show the judges their 2:20 routine. Certain errors, like stepping off the mat, require mandatory deductions. Wallace State committed none of those.

“We felt like we nailed it,” said Metcalf. Confirmation came when the team was presented the winning trophy following the competition.

As national champions, Wallace State finished ahead of second place Jones County Community College (Miss.), third place Snead State Community College (Ala.) and fourth place Pearl River Community College (Miss.). They unseated last year’s winner Palomar Community College (Calif.).

Under Metcalf’s direction, Wallace State Community College has dominated the national cheerleading competition in recent years. They earned their first national championship two years ago and finished runner-up last year.

This year was the 10th consecutive year since Metcalf took over the program 11 years ago that Wallace State received a bid to the national competition.

As a result of Wallace State’s success, many cheerleaders go on to cheer at universities.

“One thing that’s always nice about going to nationals is the opportunity to see our former cheerleaders who are now cheering at big universities, and the opportunity for those universities to see and recruit our sophomores,” said Metcalf.

“This year, of the top six universities in the competition, five have former Wallace State cheerleaders, including IA national champion, the University of Kentucky,” Metcalf said.

Members of the 2006 Wallace State National Champion cheerleading squad include Josh Adkins of Gardendale, Cole Ahlgren of Sylacauga, Megan Anders of Hartselle, Michelle Anders of Hartselle, Loren Ashbaugh of Cullman, Pat Ballew of Callahan, Fla., Brittany Ditzler of Decatur, Wesley Dobbs of Decatur, James Guarnieri of Birmingham, Leighton Healy of Huntsville, Lance Howard of Vinemont, Brandon Leming of Estill Springs, Tenn., Kyle Lyons of Huntsville, Katelyn McTamney of Fishers, Ind., Laurie Mantooth of Birmingham, Dustin Moore of Hoover, Whitney Nelson of Cullman, Shawn Pierce of Orange Park, Fla., Monica Polemeni of Huntsville, Mallory Schmidt of Decatur, Brooke Scott of Hayden, Candace Simmons of Moulton, Whitney Watts of Hartselle, and Jason Williams of Rome, Ga.

The Wallace State Cheerleaders can be seen at Wallace State basketball games this season. Visit www.wallacestate.edu for schedule of upcoming games. They also perform at high schools by invitation and at other college and community events.



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