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In their first trip to NCA nationals, the youthful Pacers' competition team steps up

COURTESY PHOTO LAKERIDGE CHEER - The Lakeridge coed cheer team competes in the NCA nationals in Dallas, Texas, from Jan. 30-Feb. 3. The Pacers finished second in the Large Intermediate Game Performance division.The Pacers flew high.

In fact, the Lakeridge High School cheerleading team flew higher than ever before.

The Pacers coed cheer team — competing in the National Cheerleaders Association High School Nationals in Dallas, Texas, from Jan. 30-Feb. 3 — soared to second place in the Large Intermediate Game Performance division.

"This was the first time in school history that Lakeridge has competed at this event and we are very excited to bring home second place," said Lakeridge cheer coach Christine Langley.

Lakeridge earned its bid to nationals by meeting NCA skill expectations during camp over summer. The Pacers' competition team has been working on its routine since August and competed against teams from Texas, Kansas, Louisiana, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania at nationals.

"It was so exciting to be among the best of the best across the country," Langley said.

This year's Lakeridge competition team has 18 cheerleaders (15 females and three males) and is comprised mostly of freshmen and sophomores.

"We've powered through illness and injury to come this far and we couldn't be more proud of our team and their work ethic," Langley said.

Next up, the Pacers will compete the OSAA state championships on Saturday, Feb. 15, at Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Portland. Lakeridge will compete in the Class 6A Coed (Large) division and is scheduled to compete at 4:55 p.m.

"We look forward to representing Lakeridge in the Large Coed division," Langley added.

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