Jr. Pee Wee Cheerleaders Take National Prize at Disney This Week

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From Glenn Shapiro, League President:

It was an unusually cold day in Florida but the competition was hot inside the HP Pavillion at Disney's ESPN Wide World of Sports. On Monday, December 6th, history was made as the Metuchen Pop Warner Jr Bulldogs captured their first ever Pop Warner National cheerleading championship with a first place finish in the Junior Pee Wee small novice division.

Until this year no team in Metuchen's history had ever qualified for the National competition. Having finished first at the Local (Raritan Valley Conference) and South and West Qualifier competitions the Metuchen girls moved on and qualified to compete in Disney by finishing 2nd at the Eastern Region Cheer finals in November. The Eastern Region is comprised of programs from New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia and is known for its strength in cheerleading. As only the top two teams in each division qualify it is extremely hard to make it out of Regions and to the National competition in Orlando. At the December 6th competition the Bulldogs competed against one other team from the Eastern Region and the top 2 from each of the other seven Pop Warner Regions from around the Country. They were able to capture the first place finish by finishing above the 17 teams in their division including the Allentown Redbirds, another Eastern Region team, who had finished first above them at Regionals.

The Bulldog squad is made up of 19 strong willed and talented girls, ages 8 to 10, most who have been with the program for a number of years starting with the youngest flag level and were competing for the first time this year. They are the foundation of a budding cheer program that has been making tremendous strides over the last few years under strong leadership. Metuchen Pop Warner has slowly been making a name for itself both locally and within the very competitive Eastern Region and now with a National championship is now known throughout the US.

In addition to competing, the Metuchen Jr Pee Wees were one of a few cheerleading teams selected for an interview that would be played over the Jumbotron in the arena during a break in the action. Before the awards ceremony at Nationals they were asked what their favorite part of their routine was and how it felt to be in Disney for the first time. At the conclusion of the interview the girls gave a quick and memorable cheer wishing luck to all of the Pop Warner cheerleaders competing that week.

On December 20th the girls will be honored at the last Council meeting of the year at Boro Hall in Metuchen. Congratulations, girls!!

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