By Ed Greif
The Cumberland County High School cheerleaders were recognized for their accomplishments during the 2012-'13 school year at their annual banquet Monday evening at the Cumberland County Community Complex.
After opening remarks by CCHS cheer booster club president Sondra Hassler, the squad members were presented academic awards by CCHS principal Janet Graham, who was "convinced you are the best athletes in school. We appreciate what you do."
Twenty-five or 97 percent of the 35 young men and women received academic awards for having GPAs of 3.5 or higher during the current school year.
Receiving academic awards were Shayla Christopher, Jessica Simmons, Katie Burney, Julie Bryson, Bailey Galan, Hannah Hitch, Haley Mitchell, Madeline Toy, Karis Davis, Cade Isaacson, A.J. Melton, Allyna Kerley, Becca Patton, Danyelle Ashburn, Elise Dille, Haley Plenert, Hannah Colton, Jade Iles, Jade Janow, Kayla Speiles, Kiersten Haynes, Michaela Blaylock, Savannah Turner, Shaelee Killmer and Taonna Miller.
Receiving letters and bars were Amber Flowers (fourth year), Tiffany Hassler (fourth year), Shayla Christopher (third year), Leah Stephens (third year), Viktoria Selby (third year), Kadee Fowler (third year), Jessica Simmons (third year), Katie Burney (second year), Bailey Galan (second year), Brittney McDaniel (second year), Haley Mitchell (second year), Karis Davis (second year), Cade Isaacson (second year), Julie Bryson (second year), Hannah Hitch (second year), Felicia Mantooth (second year), Madeline Toy (second year), Talin Miller (second year) and A.J. Melton (second year).
The first-year cheerleaders were Allyna Kerley, Danyelle Ashburn, Emma Bailey, Hannah Colton, Jade Janow, Kayla Spieles, Michaela Blaylock, Shalee Kilmer, Becca Patton, Elise Dille, Haley Plenert, Jade Iles, Jamie Blalock, Kiersten Haynes, Savannah Turner and Taonna Miller.
According to assistant coach Melissa Kerley, the Lady Jets had an "awesome year. Besides supporting our Jets and Lady Jets, a few of the things our cheerleaders participated were:
"We worked with three of our elementary schools, getting them ready for their seasons by teaching cheers and stunting safety, volunteered with the Special Olympics, volunteered withe the Mountaineers for a cheer camp, collected coats for the Coats for the Cold Program, adopted three families for Christmas and made sure they had gifts and a dinner for Christmas, and worked with the football and basketball teams to make our Pink Out games successful," said Kerley.
"Their hard work and dedication paid off and they brought home Overall Superior Camp Performance with trophies in home pom routines, extreme routine and sideline routines. Each squad received spirit sticks and numerous ribbons with six of those being gold superior — the highest you can receive at camp — and the famous UCA Spirt Banana for outstanding spirit at camp."
The booster club honored Emmy McCoy with a ring for her outstanding service for the cheer program the past seven years.