West Broward gets cheerleading victory


West Broward edged Palm Beach’s King’s Academy by one-tenth of a point in the cheerleading large division non-tumbling routine.

Special to The Miami Herald

When back-to-back state champion West Broward dropped one of its stunts during its large division non-tumbling routine, the girls didn’t panic. In fact, they rebounded quick enough to finish the sequence.

That focus paid off as the Bobcats kick-started a successful day for Broward and Miami-Dade teams at the Region 4 competitive cheerleading meet on Saturday at Dillard High School.

“What our coach has always taught us is if you make one mistake, you end right there and move on and have to make up for it with the rest of the routine,” senior Kelli Welhaf said. “I think that’s what we did [Saturday] and learned from our mistakes.”

With the top overall score in last weekend’s BCAA meet, West Broward edged out Palm Beach’s King’s Academy 92.4 to 92.3 on Saturday. The Class 2A program seeks its third state title since the sport became sanctioned in 2007, with a new coach, Roy Adam Lucas.

Coral Glades, the reigning state champion in Class 2A small all-girl tumbling, won its division with an 84.6, 1.7 points higher than Piper.

Seventy-five percent of the squad returned from the one in 2011-12 and helped usher in the new girls over the past four months. After a three-week-long winter break, the Jaguars finished a disappointing third at last weekend’s BCAA meet.

To get back “into the swing of things,” according to coach Amber Armellino, they placed fortune cookie messages in their shoes to stay positive.

Both West Broward and Coral Glades continue to add difficulty to their routines in an attempt to achieve higher marks at the state finals Jan. 31-Feb. 2. at Silver Spurs Arena in Kissimmee.

Three other Broward schools — Taravella (small coed), Douglas (large coed) and Cooper City (large all-girl tumbling) — placed first in their respective divisions. In seven of the eight divisions, a Dade or Broward team won.

Dade Christian, returning every girl from last year’s Class 1A small division all-girl tumbling runner-up squad, aspires to become the first Miami team to win a competitive cheerleading state title. Miami’s St. Brendan took first in the extra large all-girl tumbling division.

Small school non-tumbling: Coral Glades 84.6, Piper 82.9, Miramar 80.3, Palm Beach Gardens 71.9, McArthur 71.8, Doral 68.5, Hollywood Hills 67.6, Fort Lauderdale 66.9, Gulliver Prep 65, Northeast 64; Large school non-tumbling: West Broward 92.4, Kings Academy 92.3, Seminole Ridge 86.9, Dillard 80.5, Stranahan 79.5, Monarch 76.6, Coral Springs Charter 71.1, Royal Palm Beach 66, Blanche Ely 61.6, Chaminade-Madonna 58.9; Small all-girl tumbling: Dade Christian 83.6, West Boca Raton 79.4, Olympic Heights 65.3; Medium all-girl tumbling: Jupiter 87.6, Cardinal Gibbons 85.4, Key West 69.8; Large all-girl tumbling: Cooper City 71.3, Palm Beach Central 59.9, Florida Christian 58.9; Extra large all-girl tumbling: St. Brendan 83, Western 77.25; Small coed: Taravella 68.6, Wellington 67.1, Flanagan 65.3; Large Coed: Douglas 82, South Plantation 76.75, Coral Springs Charter 73.125, Coral Springs 51.

Read more Broward High Schools stories from the Miami Herald

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