Meridian Star

Sports

April 17, 2014

Local cheer standouts make Division I squads

COLLINSVILLE —     The West Lauderdale High School competition cheerleading and dance team has already racked up several accolades this season.

    After winning a state championship in MHSAA and finished No. 10 in the country in the UCA National High School Cheerleading Competition, the Lady Knights had three members of their team make Division I cheer squads.

    Heather Harris was selected to the Southern Mississippi cheerleading squad, Caroline Henson to the Mississippi cheer team and Millery Null to the Alabama squad.

    “This whole year has been almost surreal,” All-Star cheer coach Charlotte Chaney said. “It’s just been a year of blessings, and those blessings have come from the hard work and dedication from these three ladies, the other three seniors and the other members of the team.”

    West Lauderdale is also coached by Laura Posey.

Heather Harris

    Harris lives in a divided household, so Southern Miss is almost a happy medium for everyone involved.

    “I have an Ole Miss mom and a Mississippi State dad, so that sometimes left me confused as far as what to do,” Harris joked.

    But Harris said her desire to major in speech-language pathology is what led her to USM instead of not trying to make one of her parents upset. And when she decided on USM, a cheerleading tryout was one of the first orders of business.

    “I didn’t know how good a chance I had, but I knew I wanted to try after all the hard work I put in (over the years),” Harris said.

    Having been a cheerleader since the third grade, Harris said it was relaxing to know she’ll still have one of her first loves post-high school.

    “I’ll still have one thing that has meant a lot to me,” Harris said.

After finding out she made the cut during tryouts last week, Harris said it was a dream come true.

    “There was a lot of shock and excitement,” she said. “Now I’m looking forward to what I expect things will be like.”

    Both of her parents, Melissa and Jeffery Wilson, were proud of their daughter, Harris said.

    “They’re excited for me,” Harris said.

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