Senior Leads Cheer To Banner Camp Showing

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Payson High School senior Sherah Cline was selected the top cheer line member from among the more than 200 who attended the United Spirit Association Summer Camp held on the campus of Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff.

In addition to Cline's outstanding showing, the entire Longhorn spirit line, coached by Becky Hagler, earned top honors.

"Both the jayvees and varsity brought home ‘superior' awards," Hagler said. "Which means of all the evaluations done throughout the week -- July 6 to 9 -- we averaged more ‘superior' ratings than any other."

Both Longhorn spirit lines also advanced to the finals of the stunt competition where the jayvees finished first and the varsity was second in their respective divisions.

"To make it to the finals, we had to beat every team in our division," Hagler said. "In the finals, we had to perform every stunt they gave us without a mistake."

Payson was in a division with Snowflake, Alhambra, Barry Goldwater, Centennial, Superior and Apollo.

In performing the stunts for the judges, the girls had to call upon their tumbling, jumping and overall performance skills.

On the final day of the camp, coaches selected four Longhorn cheerleaders as camp all stars -- Bonnie Clayton, Leesa Sheehan, Megan Nikrant and Cline.

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Members of the Longhorn spirit line include (kneeling) Melissa Schwark and Ashlee Sexton, (standing) Monica Seville, K.C. Emminger, Jenna Wagner, Megan Nikrant, Bonnie Clayton, Kalli Wilembrecht, Berta Beltran, Ashly Howard, Jamie Jacobs, (top) Jonnie Lopez, Leesa Sheehan and Sherah Cline.

"There were 26 all stars chosen and after the first round of competition (the judges) narrowed it to six," Hagler said. "We were excited when Sherah made it to the final six and then she ended up winning it all."

For her accomplishment, Cline was awarded a commemorative medal, camp sweat shirt and other prizes.

Also, Cline and Sheehan received much-coveted invitations from camp coaches to tryout for next year's USA camp staff.

"It is a huge honor to be recognized and have a chance at being part of a professional team," Hagler said.

The cheer coach said she chose the USA camp for her charges to attend because it is a great way for the spirit line members to build camaraderie and come together as a team.

The spirit line can be seen this fall at all Payson High School home football games.

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