Updated: May 5
Salisbury University Cheerleading made history with a third-place win at the 2022 Collegiate National Championship in Daytona, Florida.
Head Coach Kristin Morris said National Championships are a “highlight of the season,” and the team hopes to attend each year.
Eligible teams are invited to compete after hosting a cheer camp, attending National Cheerleaders Association College Cheer Camp in August or submitting a video showing interest in the Championship.
Sea Gulls attended the August cheer camp in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, alongside many large-scale universities.
Morris said the team attended nationals on and off since 2009 with scattered successes.
She described this year's division of 17 teams “very tough competition.”
Coaches prepared by monitoring competitors' scoring metrics and incorporating elements inspired by other teams' techniques.
SU's cheerleaders practiced every day of the week leading up to nationals. Morris described her strategy this year as “cutting the fat,” accepting a smaller roster than ever.
Judges spent five hours discussing the close scores before unveiling the results.
SU placed third out of 17 teams, making program history just 0.2 points ahead of fourth-place.
The top-three finish was the Sea Gulls' highest placement yet, surpassing the program’s previous record of fourth place and Morris’s team-high of fifth.
Morris said the win was a “good high” before the team will shift its aim to “recruit people with good skills” for next season.
By HAILEY DEARES
Featured image courtesy of D. Trader Photography.