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2013 IESA Cheerleading Championships Set For Saturday, January 19

BLOOMINGTON - Almost 1,000 cheerleaders will showcase their talents at the 12th annual Illinois Elementary School Association (IESA) State Cheerleading Championships which will be held on Saturday, January 19 in the Exhibit Hall of the Peoria Civic Center. There will be 79 performances from 71 different schools on Saturday. There are two event categories of competition in IESA cheerleading. One is Routine (with three divisions based on squad size) and the other is Cheer (with two divisions based on squad size). In the Routine category, the Small Team division is for school squads with 5-12 cheerleaders, the Medium Team division is for school squads with 13-16 members, and the Large Team division is for squads with 17-25 members. In the Cheer category, the Small Team division is for school squads with no more than 12 members and the Large Team division is for school squads with 13-25 cheerleaders. There are some schools that participate in both of the divisions--Routine and Cheer.

Last year there were 90 performances--the highest total ever. In 2011 there were 86 performances, and in 2010, there were 93 performances.

The 2013 Championships get under way at 9:00 a.m. in the Exhibit Hall. Tickets to the Championships will be on sale at the Peoria Civic Center. Admission is $8.00 for adults, $4.00 for senior citizens and students K-8. Preschoolers are admitted free. Admission gates open at 8:00 a.m.

This year's schedule of events will be:

Event Time Awards Ceremony
All Cheer & Large Routine 9:00 a.m.-11:41 a.m. 12 noon (Approx.)
Small & Medium Team Routine 12:45-3:24 p.m. 4:00 p.m. (Approx.)

Note: The awards ceremonies will follow the final performance in the respective category. Times listed for the award ceremonies are approximate.

In Cheer, there are 20 Small Team squads scheduled to compete, along with 5 Large Team squads. In Routine, there are 25 Small Team squads scheduled to compete, 13 Medium Team squads, and 16 Large Team squads.

Following is a breakdown of what is involved in each category:

Cheer - The squad performs without music for a time period from 1:30-2:00 minutes in length. The performance may include stunts, tumbling and jumps. A school may enter either the small team or large team division.

Routine - The squad performs a routine with music for a time period from 1:30-3:00 minutes in length. The normal full routine starts with music, then a cheerleading/sideline portion, followed by music to finish the routine. The music portion of the routine cannot exceed 1:30. A school may enter the small team, medium team or large team division in the event.

Here is a brief look at each of the divisions:

Small Team Cheer

The 2012 small team champion, Jacksonville Turner, will be looking to repeat and is scheduled to perform at 11:00. Last year's runner-up in the category, Buffalo Grove St. Mary's, has moved to the medium team routine division after capturing 1st place in small team cheer in 2010 and 2011. Shelbyville Moulton is entered in the division and captured 1st place in this division seven consecutive years from 2001-2007.

Large Team Cheer

There will be a new champion crowned in this category as last year's first place and runner-up teams, Edwardsville Liberty and Edwardsville Lincoln have both moved to the large team routine division. There are only five teams competing in the large cheer category so there will be just one trophy presented. The five teams entered are Bloomington Holy Trinity, Round Lake MS, Dunlap MS, Green Valley Midwest Central, and East Peoria Central.

Small Team Routine

Lockport Kelvin Grove headlines the list of Small Team division squads as the 2012 champion in this division will be looking to repeat when they take the floor at approximately 3:15 Saturday afternoon. Winning is not something new to the Hornets as they also captured first place in the Medium Team division in 2006. Wilmington placed 2nd in the division in 2012 and will be looking to take home the first place trophy when they take the floor at 2:13 Saturday. Paris Crestwood is also another strong contender in the small team division.

Medium Team Routine

This division will feature once again the Cardinals of Orland Hills Bernardin. The Cardinals have placed first in the routine division each year they have entered the IESA competition. They captured first place the first two years in the large team routine division and then have placed first the past three years in the medium team routine category. They are entered in the medium team routine category once again and will perform at approximately 2:00 p.m. Last year's Medium Team Routine runner-up Lake Zurich North did not enter the 2013 competition.

Large Team Routine

All of the Large Team Routine performances will take place in the morning session. The defending Large Team Routine champion, Homer Glen Homer, is scheduled to perform at 10:48 a.m. while the 2012 runner-up in the large team division, Frankfort Summit Hill will take the mat at 11:12 a.m. Two years ago, the places for these two schools were reversed when Summit Hill won the 2011 large team division and Homer Glen Homer took home 2nd place honors. They both will certainly be looking to take home the 1st place trophy this year. Adding to the possibilities this year are the two Edwardsville schools--Lincoln and Liberty. Both have performed exceptionally well in prior years but always in the cheer category. Time will tell how they do in the routine category.

All times are tentative and subject to change. Please refer to the on-line schedule for most up-to-date times.

The order of competition in each event and judging criteria is on the Cheerleading Page of the IESA Web site. Go to for complete information regarding the 2013 IESA Cheerleading Championships. Click on the underlined "Cheer" in the box at the top of the page. Once on the Cheerleading home page, you can click on the underlined "Order of Competition" to view the performance schedule for all squads by event. Results of the competition will be posted Saturday evening.

IESA Contact: John Venerable, 309-829-0114

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