Go LCHS Cheer Go! Lincoln County’s 2017-18 cheerleaders bring home gold from UCA Camp

Published 9:00 am Thursday, July 20, 2017

The Lincoln County High School cheerleading squad is off to a spirited start for the upcoming school year!
The Lincoln squad, which includes 10 first-timers, recently attended a Universal Cheerleading Association (UCA) Camp at the University of Kentucky and the group returned to Stanford Tuesday afternoon with some of the camp’s top awards.
During the four-day camp held at UK’s Seaton Centre in Lexington, the squad spent their time in intense training and learning new techniques. And the LCHS squad’s performances at the camp warranted two Superior Gold Ribbons and a Superior Gold trophy, as well as two Spirit Stick Awards.
“We learned two different evaluations at camp,” Lincoln cheer coach Amy Bastin said. “We did a game-day routine that was geared more towards game time. We learned sideline cheers, we learned a cheer to do maybe at halftime or more towards the beginning of the game and we also learned stunts we could do on the sideline. We also learned an extreme routine and that routine was more of a dance, putting in skills, such as tumbling and jumps, and then building pyramids from there. More of the compeitition-style routines.”
“And we did well,” she said. “We won Superior Gold Ribbon, which is the highest that you can receive, in both our Game-Day Routine and our Extreme Routine. Then, today, during our competition we brought home a Superior trophy in Sidelines.”
Those weren’t the only team awards Lincoln earned. A Spirit Stick, which is awarded to squads that demonstrate teamwork, adherence to camp rules, timeliness, and more, is typically awarded at cheer champs. The UK camp was no exception, with LCHS the lone Spirit Stick winner.
“The Spirit Stick was given out only two nights and our team earned the Spirit Stick both nights,” Bastin said. 
In addition to the team awards, some individual cheerleaders were also singled out and Lincoln’s own Amber Foster was one of those taking home a “Pin It Forward” pin. The pin signifies leadership skills, genuine spirit, commitment, kindness and motivation.
“There were about 20 individuals chosen out of 32 teams by the staff and Amber was one of them,” Bastin said of the LCHS sophomore. “The staff member said she just defined what a true cheerleader was, that she was a leader on and off the cheer mat, that she was very helpful and that she always had a smile on her face and was always eager to help others. She was just an ambassador for the team.”
As Bastin talked about Foster’s award, she had to fight back tears.
“You’re a proud coach when they are cheering and bringing home trophies from competitions and during practice when they hit something they’ve worked so hard on and they stick it and they become proud of themselves,” she said. “But to see your squad member get recognized from someone other than me is so humbling. Amber is that true definition of a cheerleader and to have someone else see that is a true testament to what she is. To say I am proud of her is an understatement.”
But attending UCA Camp is about more than just improving on cheerleading skills and learning new routines and stunts. Bastin says she sees the camp experience as a way for the squad to grow as a family.
“Our number one goal this year (at camp) was to do some team bonding and we did that. It’s just as much about coming together as our family and really getting to know each other and seeing how each person works,” she said. “We had a Secret Sister, Secret Pal every night and every day after camp they were allowed to write little encouraging or positive notes of what they saw them achieving or working through. Then last night, they just brought little gifts and they revealed who their Secret Pal was.”
The members of the co-ed Lincoln cheerleading squad are: seniors –Jarred Julian, Katlin Wesley and Katlyn Coleman; juniors – Laken McFerron and Journey Wooten; sophomore – Brenna Harris, Malory Short, Alex Jones, Suvannah Stidham, Savannah Hammons, Amber Foster and Skylar Sheron; freshmen: Brooklyn Mullins, Sophie Cornett, Payton McFerron, Alyceson Angeloff, Cody Turner, Jamica Bryant, Hannah Tinney and Malyha Kyle; and eighth grade – Tinsley Bastin. The assistant coach is Amy Mullins.
“They have all done great and they (Julian and Turner) have just done a fabulous job learning new skills. Co-ed stunting is not something people see a lot of in high school. I think they learned so much in co-ed stunting at camp,” said Bastin. “At the end of the day when we went home, they all just held their heads high.” 
With camp now behind her, Bastin says she is looking forward to the upcoming season – which starts with the annual Death Valley Bowl on Aug. 18.
“This squad is going to be great,” Bastin said. “We’re looking forward to cheering down in our Death Valley and cheering on our Pats. We’ve got a lot of new members this year and we’re excited to get on that track and show the community what we’ve got. We’ve got so much talent on our team this year. It’s very humbling as a coach to even coach these girls and guys. I’m excited for our school and our community to see them.”