Virgen's View: Costa Mesa cheerleaders earn sixth place in world and sixth in nation

February 12, 2013|By Steve Virgen
(Courtesy of Kori…)

The Costa Mesa High cheerleaders never stole any moves or routines from a squad in Compton. In that sense, their captain, Alyssa Dasca, would never be subject to the challenge: "Bring it."

However, this past weekend it was as if Dasca and the Costa Mesa cheerleaders said, "Oh, I'll bring it. Don't worry."

Excuse my point of reference. It's from the 2000 movie, "Bring It On," a cult classic and a guilty pleasure of mine.

I don't feel too guilty because, "Bring It On," can be classified as a sports film.

Is cheerleading a sport? The movie, aside from its silly scenes and funny quotes, proves that it is.

The proof can be seen in the movie's final scene, which takes place at the competition that is televised by ESPN. The competition is known as the National High School Cheerleading Championship.

The Costa Mesa cheerleaders competed at the Universal Cheerleaders Assn. event this past weekend in Orlando, Fla.


The CMHS cheerleaders brought it, or as their coach Kori Johnson likes to say, "They killed it."

They finished sixth in the nation out of 20 teams in their division and they finished sixth out of 12 in the World School Cheerleading Championships Team Competition, that included squads from Mexico, Canada and Costa Rica, Johnson said. They also had some fun at Disney World.

"After they did their performance at nationals they were overjoyed," Johnson said. "Everyone was hugging and crying and they enjoyed themselves. I'm so proud of their performance. They are too."

The girls on the team practiced religiously in the days leading up to the event. Since August, they practiced the routine for at least two hours a day, five days a week.

The work paid off. You can watch their routine on YouTube, "CMHS Cheer at Nationals!"

In addition to Johnson, Frank Molina and Maria Calbande also coach the team.

They got them ready to try to perform their routine without flaw on a big stage in front of the best and their fans.

"They condition and they run," Johnson said. "They perform at a national level. They are certainly athletes. You're lifting humans. You have to be careful. There is a lot precision and skill involved. You have to be dedicated to do it and you have to be athletic."

This NHSCC competition is no joke.

There are six pages of rules for each division that competes in the NHSCC, basically the Super Bowl of high school cheerleading competitions. Over 550 teams competed at the event.

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