Fryer: Orange County cheerleading squads are tough and have CIF …

Cheerleading became a CIF sport beginning in the 2017-2018 school year.

Yes, it’s a sport. Guys in their 50s can compete well in indoor basketball, and men and women in their 60s can be great golfers. But when these people try high school cheerleading, they’re looking for the nearest emergency room.

The CIF Southern Section held its traditional cheer championships this past Saturday at ML King High in Riverside.

El Dorado won the Division 1AA championship. Other Orange County teams that won championships Saturday: Mater Dei (Division 1A), Villa Park (3A), Irvine (4AA), Marina (4A) and La Habra (Division 3A Coed).

Spartans Nailed It!!!CIF Championship!@latsondheimer @MAlvarez02 @ocvarsityguy

— Villa Park Athletics (@VPHSathletics) January 21, 2023

Teams receive scores based on a variety of factors, including execution. technique and difficulty and the ability to lead and inspire a crowd. Higher divisions (1AA, 1A) have fewer skill restrictions than lower divisions.

Orange County teams have done well at the CIF-SS cheer championships in four years. Mater Dei and Marina won the titles for the second consecutive year. In four championship years, Cypress has two girls championships and one knit title and finished fourth in Division 2 this season.

The cheer season continues Saturday with the SoCal Regionals. Several O.C. teams will compete in the national competition next month in Orlando, Florida.

El Dorado seniors Sarah Sriruksa and Lauren Surh took special satisfaction from their championship. They were CIF-SS champions three years ago when this year’s seniors were freshmen.

That has impressed Golden Hawks cheerleading coach Rilee Bragg.

“It shows how committed they are to the program,” Bragg said. “They love cheerleading. They love getting that respect and they love representing their school.

Sriruksa said the road to this year’s CIF championships was tough at times.

“We had so many setbacks,” he said. “So many illnesses and sometimes we had to use alternatives. But we were able to use everyone in the program to overcome the difficulties and then winning it was really rewarding.

And for those who think cheerleading doesn’t deserve CIF recognition as a sport…

“They look at joy and say it looks easy,” Surh said. “Well, we should keep it simple, keep smiling and look like we’re fine when you’re out there practically dying and tired. If we fall, we can’t just stop and throw a tantrum.

“Right before the race, I did flips in bed,” Sriruksa said, “and I fell on the floor and got a concussion. But I didn’t tell anyone and I didn’t go to the doctor right away.”

And to Surhi: “Before last year’s competition, I broke my leg in the warm-up room. But I didn’t let that stop me because I didn’t want to let my team down.

Yes, cheerleading is a sport. Tough too.

Edison golf coach Brendan Patch and Santa Margarita swimming and diving coach Richard Blanc were named the 2021-22 coaches of the year by the National Association of High School Associations last week. Blanc’s brother Ron has been a co-coach with Richard at Santa Margarita over the years, so let’s give Ron credit as well. …

Scores of two Capistrano Valley-Tesoro boys basketball games: Capistrano Valley 62, Tesoro 60 in overtime Jan. 11; Wednesday, Tesoro 54, Capistrano Valley 52. ​​Tesoro sits atop the South Coast League at 4-1, one game ahead of Capistrano Valley and San Juan Hills at 3-2. …

The Mater Dei boys basketball team is 3-4 and in fourth place in the Trinity League with league games remaining against Orange Lutheran, Santa Margarita and Servite. Mater Dei lost to Orange Lutheran and Santa Margarita in the first round of league play. The top three teams in the six-team league are guaranteed CIF-SS playoff berths, so Mater Dei could take the big road to make the division for the first time in coach Gary McKnight’s 41 seasons at the school. 1 playoff. Last year, five major teams were added to Division 1. …

All boys and girls basketball league games must be played by Thursday, February 3rd. The boys and girls basketball playoff brackets will be released on February 5. …

The CIF-SS boys and girls dual meet playoff brackets were released Thursday. The two-day tournament begins on Saturday and ends on Wednesday, February 1. The top boys teams are Trabuco Hills in Division 3 and Western in Division 5; among girls, Marina is ranked fourth in Division 1 and Laguna Hills is ranked second in Division 2. …

The Orange County North-South All-Star Football Game is Feb. 4 at Newport Harbor High. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. For tickets ($15 in advance, $20 at the gate on game day) and more information, go to …

One of the most notable football transfers this offseason has been all-county linebacker Kobe Boykin, who left the Orange to enroll at Los Alamitos. The younger Boykin is committed to Utah. …

Recent Football Coaching News: Poutea Fuega is Magnolia’s new head coach. He was previously the head coach of San Francisco Balboa. Charlie TeGantvoort left Santa Ana to take the Marina coaching job; and Lance Neal left Loara to take the coaching job at Century. …

High school coaches change schools for a better opportunity or a new challenge. Which is good. But coaches, don’t be sad if your high school athletes do the same.

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