High school cheerleading

Panthers represent well at New England competition

Medomak Valley 12th among 13 teams in Division II
By Mark Haskell | Mar 27, 2014

Lawrence, Mass. — The Medomak Valley High School cheering squad represented Maine well at the eighth annual New England Interscholastic Spirit Championships on Saturday, March 22 at Lawrence High School, with all 12 Panther student-athletes leaving it all on the mats in their final high school performance of the season.

The Panthers finished 12th among 13 teams in Division II with a score of 150.80, with Whitman-Hanson Regional High School of Whitman, Mass. winning the division with a score of 188.70.

Maine was well represented at the event, particularly by Lewiston High School, which won Division I with a score of 191.10. Marshwood of Eliot also had a third-place finish (180.20) in Division I, while Leavitt of Turner finished 13th (148.20) in Division II.

Biddeford (first in coed division with 197 points), Madison (11th in Division III with 142.60 points), Central of East Corinth (13th in Division III with 125 points) and Penobscot Valley of Howland (12th in Division IV with 122.60 points) also took part in the event.

Fifty-seven teams spanning five divisions participated in the event.

Panther coach Rachel Coor said despite its low finish in its division, Medomak Valley's “performance was amazing.”

“Unfortunately, the competition was extremely tough,” she said. “The other teams were doing very difficult skills, and we were a little outmatched.

“It was a great experience for the kids. They had fun and it was a great way to end the season.”

Medomak Valley team members included Alyssa Ducharme, Shania Melvin, Paige Russell, Olivia Ryan, Ashlee Wilson, Stephanie Hill, Cassie Dever, Amanda Poland, Hannah Wile, Whitney Dow, Hannah Smith and Courtney Ducharme.

Coor is the team's head coach, while Heather Simmons is the assistant coach. Coor officially stepped down as coach following the state Class B championships in February, but coached the team through the New England event.

Under Coor's guidance, the Panthers have won four straight regional titles, finished among the top three in the state several times and won several league championships.

This year marked the fourth consecutive time the Panthers had qualified for New Englands, but only the first time they made the trip to compete.

Medomak Valley finished second in the Kennebec Valley Athletic Conference Class B competition and won the Western Class B championship this season, while also earning a runner-up finish at the state Class B championships.

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