Cheerleading Teams Cartwheel into Finals
Hart, Christie, Nickerson, Matthew, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: Christie Hart and Matthew Nickerson Daily Herald Staff Writers
If you thought only colleges had coed cheerleading squads, think again.
The mixed-gender squads, with their powerful lifts and dramatic tosses, are popping up in DuPage County high schools, too.
And, in a testament to the strength of their programs, squads from three DuPage schools will compete Sunday for the state coed cheerleading title.
Squads from Glenbard East High School in Lombard and Waubonsie Valley High School in Aurora are going to the state competition for the second time in the past three years. A squad from Lisle High School also will compete.
"It's a real honor," Glenbard East coach Val Binkowski said.
Though relatively few high schools have coed cheerleading squads, it's not easy to make it to the state competition, coaches said.
All the competitors have to meet a judging standard, scoring 85 percent of the possible score to qualify.
And qualifying, sort of like Olympic figure skating, is a one-shot deal. Squads may enter two regional competitions, but must decide beforehand whether it's their qualifying performance.
"If you fall, you're gone," Binkowski said. …