Corner Canyon cheer best in state; top five at nationals
Mar 03, 2020 11:43AM
By Catherine Garrett
The Corner Canyon High cheer team won the 5A state title Jan. 25 at Salt Lake Community College. The Chargers varsity squad placed fourth at nationals Feb. 8 in Orlando, Florida. (Photos courtesy Whitney Lunt)
By Catherine Garrett | [email protected]
The Corner Canyon varsity and junior varsity programs took top-five finishes at nationals Feb. 8 in Orlando, Florida. The varsity team, who recorded the highest score in their preliminaries group, bypassed the semifinal round and placed fourth out of 62 teams in the Medium Varsity Division I — the largest and most competitive division at nationals. The JV team finished fifth of 29 teams in the Small Junior Varsity division, marking the school’s highest placement for a JV squad.
“This is the first time that both teams have made finals in the same year, and the first time that both of our teams have had top-five finishes in the same year,” head coach Whitney Lunt said. “It was a history-making year for our program.”
The nationals finish comes on the heels of CCHS’ third state title in the school’s seven-year history. On Jan. 25, the Chargers finished off an undefeated season by winning the 5A state championship at Salt Lake Community College. “It was amazing this year,” Lunt said. “We’ve really been focusing on being consistent and doing our part to execute because we can only control ourselves. We won region as well this year, but didn’t have our best performance and so our goal at state was to hit our routine and give our all.”
“Winning state felt extremely rewarding,” said senior Rylee Cotterell. “This entire season our team has put countless hours of hard work into this routine and we felt that we were able to showcase all of that work in our performance. I felt proud to be able to represent my school with a first-place award.”
“After we performed it was all in the judges’ hands, but hearing ‘Corner Canyon’ being announced in first place made all of the hard work pay off,” said McKenna Warburton.
Lunt said the highlight of the meet for her team was performing a “perfect hit” with no falls on any of their stunts. “The routine has been upgraded for nationals and has become progressively harder throughout the year, so it was big for us to be able to hit this routine at state and going into nationals,” she said.
This season, the Chargers have been focusing on “going all out,” building confidence and trusting teammates as they have gone undefeated in each of their events.
“My team is full of people who are willing to push themselves to become better,” Cotterell said.
Cotterell received Academic All-State honors while also receiving the lone scholarship awarded. “They literally only give one scholarship and they said the panel unanimously chose Rylee to receive it,” Lunt said.
“I was shocked,” Cotterell said of winning the scholarship. “It was a great moment because I had put so much work into all of my studies throughout my high school career.”
Cotterell, Warburton and four others — Arielle Taylor, Kyleigh Miller, Samantha De LA Cruz and Miracle Fontana — were named to the All-State team this year.
“Being named All-State and to be with the best of the best around the state was such an honor,” Warburton said. “I loved representing my school. I am so grateful for all of my training and all of my coaches to have gotten the coolest experience.”
The JV team, which had five first-place wins this season, came in third at the state championships.
Also on the CCHS cheer team this season are Lauren Adams, Avery Adamson, Lily Baird, Brooke Barney, Gretta Bohn, Bailey Davis, Lauren Easton, Annabelle Harris, Kiki Howard, Addy Jones, Abbie Keys, Kim Liljenquist, Derby Marshall, Emilie Mecham, Brookie Nelson, Ella Nelson, Presley Noble, Sierra Oliver, Christine Schmidt, Liv Sharp, Tatym Smith, Kira Thayne, Madi Wankier, Macy Watts, Taylee Westra, Jade Winkel and Kylie Wood, along with honorary cheerleader Sierra Schmidt.
Lunt has been assisted on the coaching staff by Cameron Larsen, Stephanie Sampson, Bria Bowthorpe and Rylee Seamons.