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WRHS senior earns national cheer honor

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By Brenda Sexton-The Courier-Herald

Jessica Ayers and Mimi Lamb have something to cheer about. The Plateau area seniors won an All Star Cheer World Championship.

Ayers, who attends Enumclaw High, and Lamb, who attends White River, compete with the senior elite team for South Elite All Stars in Covington.

Their team won the Large International Open Senior All Girl Division World Champions title at Disney World in Orlando, Fla., April 26 and 27. The competition is described as the Olympics of All Star Cheer and is by invitation only. Countries come from around the globe to compete and only the best-of-the-best are asked to participate. There are eight to 10 different divisions.

“It's definitely the biggest competition there is in All Star Cheerleading,” Ayers said. “You have to be good enough to get there. Getting there is like winning something in itself.”

“It's amazing how big it is if you don't know anything about it,” said Maria Ayers, an assistant coach for the team. Kentwood High gymnastics coach Kim Kawachi leads the South Elite All Stars.

“It was amazing,” Lamb said. “It was the best feeling in the world to win.”

Competition involves an approximately 2-minute, 30-second routine that has to include a stunt series, basket tosses, pyramid, tumbling portion and dance section.

Ayers and Lamb are two of 36 girls ages 14 to 19 on the team. Lamb is a base for Ayers, a flyer, which means Lamb flings Ayers into the air.

At one time, both girls were members of their respective high school cheer squads. Ayers was also a Wolverine football cheerleader for a time before joining South Elite three years ago. Lamb made the move from Reign City, Auburn's All Star Cheer team, to South Elite this season to get a shot at the world title, a move that obviously paid off.

This was her last opportunity. She will be too old to compete next year and plans to attend Washington State University.

Ayers will return to the team next year while she's attending Green River Community College and is hoping to make a trip back to worlds.

In addition to the title, World Champions, the team earned a trophy, but the girls will receive rings, like the Superbowl, for their victory.

The pair also hope to catch a glimpse of themselves on television Sunday and Monday when ESPN2 is expected to air pieces of the competition.

Brenda Sexton can be reached at bsexton@courierherald.com.

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