April 16, 2014 Victoria, BC (ISN) – The Cowichan Valley Allstars Cheerleading junior and senior teams closed out their competition season last weekend at the 8th Annual Sea to Sky International Cheerleading Championships in Vancouver at Canada Place, putting many teams on notice that cheerleading is on its way up on Vancouver Island.


Kiara E. of the Cowichan Valley Allstars holds up the spoils of a gold medal from her level two tumbling performance – Erich Eichhorn image ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

The Sea to Sky meet, the largest competitive cheerleading competition in Canada, attracting over 2500 competitors on 150 teams across Canada and the United States, is the only sanctioned event in Canada to offer athletes bids to the the World Cheer and Dance Championships. Bringing invaluable international experience, the meet certainly can only improve the competitive level of cheer on the island.

Junior cheer members Sara ( above ) and Elizabeth (base) stunt for the judges during day two competition – Erich Eichhorn image ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

The sport of cheerleading, although missing the element of contact that we crave in many sports, has certainly started to garner the respect of many people. Requiring all the elements that both dance and gymnastics require, the high-flying sport is quickly finding a greater following on Vancouver Island for both girls and boys alike. Although “Island” cheer is still very new, the awareness of the sport is starting to increase in the lower island area.

CV Allstar junior squad member Laurel makes eye contact with the judges for the extra points. – Erich Eichhorn image ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

The dream child of coach and coowners Rhonda Dale and Lonnie Gamble, the Cowichan Valley Allstars, only running in their third season, have been slowly rising up the standings. Their youth and senior teams have been improving with every meet. Coming into the Sea to Sky Championship, both teams have shown well, last placing fourth and fifth for their youth (ages 7-12) and their senior (ages 11-18) squads respectively at a regional meet in Richmond.

Allstar seniors show team effort during day one competition at the Sea to Sky Cheerleading Championships – Erich Eichhorn image ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

When asked about CVA’s future potential, Dale would comment, ” every year our teams improve in their abilities and in the points accumulation. The athleticism that the team shows is very evident in everything they do.”

Senior team member Ashley gets support from her teammates while performing a heal stretch in a stunt – Erich Eichhorn image ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

Competing for the first time on an international stage for many is a daunting task at best, but both CVA teams would demonstrate, that after two days of intense competition, that they could perform at a higher level, pushed there by the talent from abroad. The CVA Junior team would seem to respond the stiff competition, demonstrating two impressive routines for the more than 750 spectators at Canada Place. The senior team, competing with modified routine due to one teammate falling ill only two days prior would demonstrate a spectacular routine. An unfortunate fall in day two of competition would hurt their accumulated point score and ultimately their overall position.

Kiara E. isn’t afraid of heights as she is vaulted into the air by her tea mates during practice before going on stage – Erich Eichhorn image ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

Commenting about her teams overall performance on the weekend, Dale would say, “This weekend I was particularly pleased with our youth group. All season they have showed dedication in coming to practices and working full out to increase their skills. They have been the first team to be able to place top three and have been quite consistent in their accumulated points. This last meet, they were able to take the judge’s comments and suggestions from Saturday and insert them easily into their Sunday routine to garner themselves a few more points.”

Cowichan Valley Allstars junior team team give one last final impression to the judges to end their routine . – Erich Eichhorn image ( www.allsportmedia.ca )

“Our senior team showed a spectacular beginning to their routine, which they had modified a couple of days before as one of their teammates was ill and unable to attend. With all the changes that they made they still made the routine exciting and impressive. While both teams did not place high they each were able to increase their scores in one or more of the judged areas “, Dale would add.

Further information on the Cowichan Valley Allstar Cheerleaders can be found at www.cvacheer.com