Web exclusive, February 4, 2011
Island cheerleaders sailing on to state competition
With a score of 106.1 and a third place Class D finish at the East/West regionals, the Deer Isle-Stonington team is on deck for state competition February 12. Pictured, high above their teammates, are Belle Merritt and Paige Rollins during the team’s competition routine.
by Chris Billings
The Deer Isle-Stonington High School cheering team is in a rebuilding year, but the audience watching from the bleachers at the Bangor Auditorium would never have known that. From the moment the girls stepped onto the mats until the very end of their routine at the class D regional competition on January 29, the game was on.
Their hard work and dedication paid off when they captured third place with a final score of 106.1—and a chance to compete on Saturday, February 12, at the state cheering competition.
Coming off last year’s competition as state and regional runners-up, the Island’s cheering team has had to work twice as hard this year.
First, they had to compensate for the loss of seniors. Then they had to compensate for the fact that they are simply a smaller team. But they are nothing if not “very dedicated,” Coach Kimberley Larsen said, adding: “This group of girls has a very positive future in cheering.”
With only two short weeks to improve on their routine, Larsen said her main goal is to “keep my girls injury-free and healthy. We will also be working on our pyramid partner stunt work.”
Co-captains Kelsey Davis, a senior, and Amber Jones, a junior, have been a huge influence on helping the team to reach their goal of returning to the state competition, she said.