KSU competitive cheer squad clinches first Division I championship

By Jennifer Hafer In an awesome display of spirit and athleticism, the Kennesaw State University…

Georgia (Apr 28, 2010)

By Jennifer Hafer

In an awesome display of spirit and athleticism, the Kennesaw State University competitive cheer squad recently clinched its first Division I national championship.

As soon as the squad finished its final performance at the 2010 NCA/NDA Collegiate Cheer and Dance Championship in Daytona Beach, Fla., April 10, the celebration began.

“Our final routine was flawless,” team captain Jocilyn Yarnell said. “We were happy we hit a solid routine. The judges were going to give us whatever score they were going to give us, but I think we all knew in the back of our head that we won.”

Trailing rivals the University of New Hampshire and Quinnipiac University after the preliminary round, the 23 KSU cheerleaders rallied to overcome a small point deficit, said Yarnell, a senior majoring in exercise and health science.

“We had a few errors in our prelim match,” she said, “but afterwards, we just stressed to the team that we needed to work on making corrections in the next round. New Hampshire and Quinnipiac hit their routines on the first day, so there was no room for improvement. Plus our routine was harder than theirs.”

This is the team’s third national championship in six years. The squad won back-to-back Division II championships in 2004 and 2005.

As a club sport, the competitive cheer squad administers its own budget, designs its own uniforms and employs a coach and choreographer. Of the team’s $22,500 budget this season, the university provided only $9,380. Now the team is trying to raise an additional $4,000 for national championship rings.

“We had such a great team this year, especially in terms of bonding,” Yarnell said. “It was just icing on the cake to win the championship at the end of the season.”

To view the squad’s championship-winning routine visit: http://www.varsity.com/event/1361/2010_nca_nda_collegeiate_cheer_and_dance_championship.aspx.


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu