PSHS cheer squad garners third at state

Photo courtesy Jenine Marnocha The Pagosa Springs High School cheer squad practices prior to last weekend’s state spirit championships in Denver. The Pirates ended up third in the 3A cheer competition — the highest finish for the school in recent memory.

Photo courtesy Jenine Marnocha
The Pagosa Springs High School cheer squad practices prior to last weekend’s state spirit championships in Denver. The Pirates ended up third in the 3A cheer competition — the highest finish for the school in recent memory.

For the first time in about 30 years, the Pagosa Springs High School cheer squad made the final four of the state cheer championships, bringing home a third-place finish.

The team competed against 16 other teams in the coed cheer competition at last weekend’s 2A/3A Spirit Championships at the Denver Coliseum. The team placed 12th at the same competition last year.

According to coach Jen Tuggle, the team performed better at the competition than they have at any other point this year.

“My team was on point and showed up to the competition mat with a presence and confidence they’ve not had before,” Tuggle wrote in an email.

The coach explained that the team’s routine was more technically challenging than in previous years and that, with more tumbling and “well-executed co-ed” stunts, the team began the competition with a higher point base.

Tuggle further explained that, for the co-ed cheer division, the team had to incorporate coed partner stunts, where the guys as a base had to bear the weight of one flyer, team stunts, jumps, tumbling, a cheer, a dance section and an ending pyramid.

“The team has put in tremendous effort and worked so very hard on their technique & raising the bar on their individual skill sets. Their jumps are higher; their motions sharper; their stunting more difficult & dialed in; their cohesiveness as a team top notch. It showed on the mat, and they were definitely turning heads and generating comments in the crowd,” Tuggle wrote.

In the Pirates’ routine, Tuggle noted the team also added a basket toss, with Gus Palma and Mason Brown tossing Demi Pastin approximately 16 feet in the air.

Having the 3 guys on the team was such an asset, and it definitely helped us get to the Finals & secure the 3rd place spot in the State Spirit Finals,” Tuggle added, noting that she hopes to have as many or more guys on the team next year to help bring home a first-place trophy.

“I am so proud of this team and how far they’ve come this year. Our goal was to make the Finals at State & we achieved that,” the coach wrote.

 

This story was posted on December 11, 2014.