This past weekend, Howard Payne University’s cheer teams traveled to Winston-Salem, North Carolina to compete at the Christian Cheerleaders of America National Competition. This year’s competition was held at the Benton Conventions Center.

They performed their competition routine involving stunts, jumps, tumbling and a cheer in the College Small Co-ed Division. The teams competed twice on March 9, and won first place based on their combined scores from both performances.

In addition, HPU competed in group stunt performances, which include a team of five people performing a stunt sequence.

HPU’s Gold Team comprised of Brooke Belcher, Harlie Benham, Kristopher Lowery, Rachel Moore and Whitney Presbaugh won second place in the group stunt devision.

HPU’s Blue Team included Aly Castle, Kelci Feist, Lawrence Martinez, Dariann Reed and Mitchell Sostarich won fifth place.

“The team worked very hard throughout the semester on their different routines and I, obviously, could not be any more proud of their accomplishments,” said Jeffri Malone Foster, HPU cheerleading coach and youth ministry graduate assistant.

The Christian Cheerleaders of America National Competition’s motto is “Building people before pyramids.” Participants travel from more than 20 states. During the weekend, teams are thrown a welcome party, concert, coach of the year is names and the cheer competition with more than 50 divisions.

Nationals were broadcasted live via www.cheercca.com during the competition. HPU’s cheerleaders could be seen at 4:06, 4:12 and 4:42 p.m.