Several Commerce High School cheerleaders walked away with several awards and accolades after attending a region-wide cheer camp over the weekend.
21 Tiger Cheer members attended the Universal Cheerleaders Association’s summer camp hosted at the Great Wolf Lodge in Grapevine, Texas from Friday to Monday. There, they took classes, performed and had many bonding and fellowship opportunities. CHS Cheer Coach Sawyer Cunningham said that the group learned a lot from their experiences.
“I feel like they took a lot of new leadership skills with them from camp,” Cunningham said. “They get a good opportunity to really grow as a team and solve problems together.”
Assistant Coach Jennie Reynolds worked primarily with the junior varsity squad, and said she was very impressed with their performance.
“This was their first time to perform/compete at the high school level in front of an audience,” Reynolds said. “Although they’ve been coming to workouts and practices since March, this was the first time to show off all they’ve learned. I was so impressed with their commitment.”
This was the first time that the CHS cheer squad has attended a UCA camp during Cunningam’s tenure. There are dozens of summer camps organized by the association across the United States.
Cunningham says that the goal is to get an invite to perform at the UCA National Competition in February. Last year, the Tigers qualified for the competition, but did not have adequate funds to attend. The coach said that fundraising is in place to make a run at Nationals this school year, though.
In addition, Cunningham stated that she feels that the experiences gained at the UCA have better prepared her squad to perform well at the UIL State Spirit Competition, usually held in January. In 2017, the Tigers won the Small School Co-Ed State Championship and finished second in the larger 3A division in 2019.
“I’m pumped for UIL this next year,” Cunningham said. “I feel like this is our year.”
She stressed that while winning is good, it’s not the only important thing.
“It’s not just about winning, but it’s about loving each other and coming together as a team and a family,” Cunningham said.
The coach added that three senior cheerleaders were chosen to be on the UCA staff next year, effectively offering them a job once they graduate.
Below is a list of honors and awards CHS cheer received:
Varsity: 1st place - Gameday / 2nd place - Rally Routine / Camp Champ award
Junior Varsity: 2nd place - Gameday / 2nd place - Rally Routine / 2nd place - overall
All American selections: Jaden Buchanan, Korrighan Smith, Alexis Morgan, Payton Miller, Trinity Hall, Honesty Bridges, Khana May.
“Pin it Forward” Leadership Award: Sydney Oliphant, Savannah Scott, Jenna Buchanan, Korrighan Smith.
“Top Banana” Spirit Award: CHS Cheer.
Chosen to join UCA staff: Jaden Buchanan, Jesse Edwards, Korrighan Smith.