CENTRAL Colleges of the Philippines stunned defending champion National University to regain the college division title in the National Cheerleading Championships at The Arena on Sunday.
CCP Bobcats coach Arnold Villanueva said their first place finish was unexpected, especially as they were up against a formidable National U Pep Squad that recently dethroned University of the Philippines as UAAP cheerleading champ.
They Said It!
“For the past three competitions we were up against NU, we found out that speed does not work kasi NU is doing a slow-paced routine where everything gets hit. Nilaro namin yung laro ng NU. So we went into their ballgame and it paid off." CCP coach Arnold Villanueva
“What we planned for the finals was just to try and hit the routine as perfect as possible kasi alam ko everyone magsusugal talaga- they will all aim for difficulty. Tama yung assessment namin na ang matitirang team with the lesser number of errors will make it tonight,” Villanueva added.
Villanueva admitted CCP tore a page off the NU playbook on the way to a fifth title.
He explained that CCP had a change of game plan, where the Bobcats exchanged their fast-paced routine with a slower one favored by the Bulldogs, the top NCR qualifier.
“For the past three competitions we were up against NU, we found out that speed does not work kasi NU is doing a slow-paced routine where everything gets hit. Nilaro namin yung laro ng NU. So we went into their ballgame and it paid off,” Villanueva said.
The gamble paid off as NU, although scoring very high in stunts, tosses and pyramids, also incurred 27 points in penalties and deductions.
In comparison CCP managed to limit its penalties to just four points while second place University of Perpetual Help System Dalta was only penalized two points.
CCP previously won the NCC College titles in 2012, 2010, 2008 and 2007. As an added bonus, CCP also took first place in the Partner Stunt Division.
In the High School Co-ed Division, Immaculate Conception Academy emerged as the decisive winner while Mindanao-based teams Saravia National High School and Lanao del Norte National Comprehensive High School placed second and third, respectively.
“Honestly, it was the first and only perfect run that we have since we have been running it three weeks ago,” said ICA coach Archie Meris who was literally rushed by his ecstatic squad on the competition floor after their finals-winning performance considering they had last-minute revisions made in the same day and two of their flyers performed with tonsilitis and chickenpox.
“Nagka stiff neck ako kasi nagwawala ako kanina watching them perform in their morning and run-through routines which were so different- the stars and pyramids were falling. I was personally amazed with their performance (in the finals)... it's a tribute to their heart and determination,” he added.
In College Group Stunts, Taguig City University took first place followed by NU at second place with CCP Team 2 completing the cast at third.
NCC director Paula de la Llana-Nunag said it was a banner year in the ninth edition of their annual competition after 165 teams competed to qualify for the March national finals which was held for the first time at the Mall of Asia. A total of 95 teams from all over the country competed in the two-day event sponsored by Smart, Oishi and CKYN Activewear.