Cheerleader Change-Up

Team Hosts Camp at Home Due to COVID-19


Courtesy of Shannon Lindsey

Varsity cheerleaders pose with UCA staff member during at-home cheer camp.

The 2020 Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA) out-of-town, overnight, summer cheer camp was switched to a home camp and was postponed until last weekend Aug. 15-16 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We were originally set to go to camp at Angelo State University at the end of June,” cheer coach Shannon Lindsey said. “However, after meeting with our superintendent, we felt that it was in the best interest at the time not to attend an overnight camp. We felt there were too many unknowns with COVID to risk the health and safety of our athletes.”

Cheerleaders are required to attend cheer camp in order to receive the credentials to participate during the competition season.

“In order for teams to compete later in the season, there are a couple of requirements each team must have received at summer camp,” Lindsey said. “We have to make sure our team receives team safety training and squad credentialing.”

Although Lindsey found the cheerleaders a home camp, this caused an impact on seniors who didn’t get to enjoy their last out of town summer camp.

“I was upset I didn’t get the chance to have my last camp experience,” captain Janice Hanson said.” I love cheering with my team, and missing that experience was heartbreaking.”

This change also affected the JV cheerleaders because they were completely excluded from the camp with everything being planned last minute.

“I feel bad for JV members who missed out on camp completely, but with a team this talented, I know we’ll bounce right back,” Hanson said.

All American tryouts were still held. All American is an award given to those who display superior technical skills, leadership and strong personal values. Seven cheerleaders received this award.

“I was thrilled because typically only seniors are allowed to try out, but I got the opportunity this year and it was definitely worth it,” co-captain Isabel Ybarra said. “This allows me to add a patch on my letterman and there are also many varsity special events opportunities around the world for All American cheerleaders to participate in.”

Other daily awards like “dancing diva” or “cheerleader of the day” were also handed out by the UCA staff.

“The UCA staff teach us a dance and after we go through it a few times as a group, they start challenging us to see who can do the most times without mistakes,” freshman Bella Lindsey said. “It was just fun having friendly competition with my teammates while learning and practicing material.”