Foothill High School’s varsity and junior varsity (JV) competition cheer squads took home three national titles and a fourth-place victory from the United Spirit Association’s (USA) High School Spirit Nationals held at the Anaheim Convention Center Friday, March 30 – Sunday, April 1, 2012.
The teams qualified to compete at nationals during regional competitions held earlier in the season. The competitive cheer season lasts a grueling nine months, starting in July at camp and continuing through nationals. The athletes also compete at regional competitions to practice and hone their skills on the road to nationals. The teams rallied past injuries early in the season and a few substitutions late in the game on their quest for national titles.
Foothill's two group stunt teams competed Friday in the group stunt intermediate division. The field included 38 teams, including the two Foothill teams. Both Foothill teams were among the 10 teams to make it to finals, ultimately winning the first and fourth-place titles.
First place went to Team Sarina, who had been undefeated all season: Sarina DeJoy, Bailey Downum, 'Alakoka Kailahi, Jordan Robinson and Haley Zavattero.
Fourth place went to Team Gabbie: Haley Bean, Camille Hamlin, Hayley Jefferies, Emily Palange and Gabbie Scalise.
Junior Varsity Show Cheer
Foothill's undefeated junior varsity competitive team competed Friday in the small JV show cheer novice division, securing a spot in the finals with a first-place win. The field included 22 teams with the top six making it to finals. The team performed flawlessly on Sunday at finals, bringing home the first-place trophy and national championship title.
“The JV team had such a solid season,” Coach Karen Maurice said. “Not only did they start strong, they never let the pressure get in the way of their ultimate goal, and they finished the season undefeated and national champions.”
Varsity Show Cheer
Foothill's varsity competitive cheer team competed Saturday in the small varsity show cheer division, securing a spot in the finals with a first-place win. The field included 13 teams with the top three advancing to finals. The team gave a perfect performance Sunday at finals to bring home the first-place trophy and national championship title.
“The varsity team had a challenging season but stayed strong and committed,” Coach Kim DeJoy said. “We re-choreographed their routine after every regional until we perfected it for nationals. Our motto, ‘Start Strong, Finish Stronger,’ truly applies to these talented athletes.”
The varsity squad includes Amanda Arnold, Jori Berman (team captain), Sarina DeJoy, Bailey Downum, Michelle French, Diane Hadley, Camille Hamlin, Hayley Jefferies, 'Alakoka Kailahi, Keri Kodama, Gabriella Scalise and Haley Zavattero.
The JV squad includes Haley Bean, Kendall Cash, Zoe Cristobal, Mitsu Dill, Sarah Downey, Kelsey Emery, Rikki Holman, Emily Palange (team captain), Jordan Robinson, Taylor Sanchez, Jessica Smilovitz, Sabrina Stermer, Brittany Trevor, and Natalie Wright.
Coaching staff: The Foothill Cheer Program is led by head coach Kim DeJoy, who coaches the varsity show cheer and group stunt team (Sarina); Karen Maurice coaches the JV show cheer team; Megan Moore coaches the group stunt team (Gabbie); Cheryl Holy is the Foothill cheer adviser.