Jan. 11, 2007
ORLANDO, Fla. (www.ucfathletics.com) - The UCF spirit program begins its pursuit of a second national championship on Friday, Jan. 12 with the partner stunt competition at Disney MGM Studios. The Golden Knights' quest continues throughout the weekend as the full cheerleading squad and KnightMoves dance team compete against the nation's best programs at Disney's Wide World of Sports ® on Saturday, Jan. 13 and Sunday, Jan. 14.
Prior to the competition this weekend, the team has invited its fans to watch practice on Thursday, Jan. 11 from 4-5:30 p.m. and Friday, Jan. 12 from 3-5 p.m. at the Education Gymnasium. The Golden Knights will be joined by squads from LSU, Tennessee and Ohio State during Friday's session.
"We are really looking forward to performing in front of the other three teams," said head coach Linda Gooch. "It gives us a chance to do our routines for a new crowd and also measure our efforts against some of the competition we will face."
On Friday at the Indiana Jones Theatre within the MGM Studios Theme Park, two UCF duos are set to partcipate in the partner stunt competition. First up at 8:55 p.m. are senior Chris Stadler (Orlando, Fla.) and freshman Lauren Whitt (Orlando, Fla.) followed by the third-ranked team of senior Randy Brown (Tampa, Fla.) and freshman Kimmy Barker (St. Petersburg, Fla.) at 9:35 p.m.
The semifinals of the team events take place Saturday. KnightMoves first competes in the Hip Hop Division at Disney MGM Studios at 12:15 p.m. before performing in the IA Dance Division at Wide World of Sports at 6 p.m. Although the UCF cheerleaders earned a bye, they will practice their routine on site at 5:19 p.m.
Sunday includes the Hip Hop Dance Finals at 12:30 p.m. followed by the IA Dance Finals at 3 p.m. and the IA Cheer Finals at 5 p.m. All take place at Wide World of Sports.
Gooch says the Golden Knights are ready despite the glitch they encountered early in the week when junior Tyson Walters (St.Petersburg, Fla.) developed an illness and was unable to practice. "Our alternate Cory Brown (Tampa, Fla.) was amazing this week. He stepped right in and was able to learn the routine," said Gooch. "Cory enabled us to continue practicing without a problem."
Ranked fifth in the south region this year, the Golden Knights won the national title in 2003. They took fourth in the field of 19 schools last year.
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