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GSU cheerleaders win national title
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The Georgia Southern University all-girl cheerleading squad secured its fifth national championship title at the 2015 National Cheerleading Association Collegiate National Championships held in Daytona Beach, Fla.

The squad of 20 girls posted a final-round score of 84.43 out of 100, beating squads from St. Joseph University, the University of Florida, East Carolina University and Texas A&M University.

“I think our success shows that we are one of the top-notch cheerleading programs in the U.S.,” said head coach Barry Munkasy. “We compete at a level that is commensurate with our ability and do very well at that level.”

This was the all-girl squad’s fifth national win in the Intermediate All-girl Division in the last seven years. This made the squad back-to-back champions after winning the title in 2014.

All of their success did not come easy, though, according to Taylor Ramey, sophomore cheerleader.

“After nine months of hard work, sacrifice and countless hours put in behind the scenes, I can now say that two practices a day, ice baths, running Hanner and full out routines back-to-back was all worth it to be a two-time national champion,” she said. “When it was announced, I became so overloaded with joy that I bawled my eyes out.”

In addition to the all-girl squad’s success, the co-ed squad achieved national recognition as well with a fifth-place finish in its respective division, competing against squads from the  University of Michigan, Southern Methodist University, the University of Texas San Antonio, and Middle Tennessee State University.

“They gave it their best effort, but sometimes things just don’t go perfectly,” said Munkasy. “And in theses cases, they must go perfectly in order to win.”

Although the all-girl squad’s national championship win is still sinking in, Munkasy said the program is already thinking about next year’s national championship competition and how they want to sweep national titles in both the all-girl and co-ed divisions.

“Our first major goal is for all-girl to do our first 3-peat,” said Munkasy. “Our second major goal is to find a way to help the co-ed team win their first national championships.”