The Hope College cheerleaders have finished seventh in the finals of the small coed division of the college cheerleading national championships held January 10-11 in Orlando, Fla. The Dutch advanced through the semi-finals from an original field of 13 teams and then placed seventh in the finals.
Competing at nationals for the second consecutive year, the Dutch ended eighth in 2002. This year Hope was also ranked second in the audience participation category. The winning squad in the small coed division was from Coffeyville Community College in Kansas. Sponsored by the Universal Cheerleading Association, the national championships were held at the Walt Disney Sports Complex.
Members of the Hope squad are Meredith Albers, a junior from Hamilton, Mich. (Hamilton HS), freshman Eli Cryderman of Caledonia, Mich. (Caledonia HS), sophomore Katie DeYoung of Portage, Mich. (Portage HS), sophomore Ashley Farr of Jenison, Mich. (Jenison HS), sophomore John Freyermruth of Grand Rapids, Mich. (Ottawa Hills HS), junior Tony Frucci of Plainwell, Mich. (Plainwell HS), junior Betsie Jetter of Greenville, Ohio (Greenville HS), sophomore Carmen Nee of Kalamazoo, Mich. (Kalamazoo Christian HS).
Also, sophomore Ashleigh Sartor of Plymouth, Mich. (Plymouth Canton HS), senior captain Kristin Sheehan of Lansing, Mich. (Holt HS), junior Anne Slaughter of Holland, Mich. (West Ottawa HS), freshman Teasha Smith of Allegan, Mich. (Allegan HS), junior Melissa Snyder of Mishawaka, Ind. (Penn HS), sophomore Kelly Steeves of Clarendon Hills, Ill. (Hinsdale Central HS), sophomore Sarah Stowell of Lake Odessa, Mich. (Lakewood HS), and Aaron Thomson of Sandusky, Mich. (Sandusky HS).
The coaches of the team are Wes Wooley and Kris Ritton.