NCAA cheerleading: Chiefs eye repeat, Altas seek redemption
Arellano University seeks to duplicate its sensational feat last year while Perpetual Help hopes to regain lost glory when the 91st NCAA cheerleading competition unfolds Tuesday before an expected mammoth crowd at Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
After two straight seasons of playing second fiddle to the Altas Perps Squad, the Chief Squad finally came through and captured their first ever cheerleading title while ending the former’s stranglehold of the sport.
And Arellano U did it by the closest of margins and edged the Las Pinas-based school by a solitary point, 405.5-404.5.
The cheer squad from Legarda hopes to duplicate, if not better, its performance a season ago.
“We’ve prepared for the whole year and we hope to successfully defend our title,” said Arellano U coach and trainer Lucky San Juan.
Arellano U is gunning for its fourth senior title this season after it topped chess, football and centerpiece athletics.
They will have their hands full though against Perpetual, which is expected to exact revenge after Arellano U put a stop to the former’s five-year reign.
The Altas Perps Squad is the league’s most titled teams after snaring eight of the possible 11 crowns.
“We’ve trained harder after what happened last year. We’re confident we can win it back this season,” said Perpetual mentor Randolph Rosario.
Perpetual Help missed a sixth-peat feat after committing too many mistakes despite performing tougher stunts and routines.
Aside from Perpetual Help and Arellano U, the only other schools to win the event were Mapua and Jose Rizal in 2004 and 2008, respectively.
NCAA Management Committee cheer Melchor Divina said they expect a more exciting competition this year.
“The cheerleading competition is a fitting ending to what has been a successful and massive year for the NCAA,” he said.
For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity.