By MIKE MONTFORT —
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — Navarro Cheer scored a 98.13 in Coed Junior College Division Finals, and secured its 13th NCA/NDA National Collegiate Championship since 2000.
Navarro’s 98.13 score Friday was the highest-point total achieved by a squad in any division of competition, so coach Monica Aldama’s Bulldogs also claimed their fifth NCA Grand National Championship since 2012 — the only junior college program to win multiple NCA Grand National titles.
The Bulldogs finished second in Thursday’s preliminary competition and performed first in Friday’s Finals. Needless to say, the only squad to score 98 or more in its performance Friday nailed it precisely.
That put the pressure on rival Trinity Valley, which also had to wait through a fourth-place Division II Coed Cheer Final performance by Columbus State University before the Cardinals took The Band Shell stage.
TVCC’s performance earned a 96.87 raw score Friday — slightly above its prelim mark. Judges, however, deducted 1.50 points and the Cardinals settled for a 95.37 total.
Navarro’s NCA Championship was its first since 2015.
Only a handful of qualifying finalists Friday scored a 97; most division winners topped out between 94 and 95 in the subjective scoring.
Coed Division I winner Weber State came closest to Navarro (97.97). In All-Girls Divisions, Kennesaw State won Intermediate Division I with 97.63, while Texas A&M’s Competition Squad claimed Intermediate Division I-A with 97.47. Small Coed Division I winner SMU scored 97.33.
Major university programs? The University of Louisville graded 96.96 in Coed D-IA and 96.43 in All-Girl; Small Coed winner North Carolina State had 96.03.
Going into the three-day weekend event, the junior college division has been dominated by Navarro or Trinity Valley since 2000, and the two were left this year to fight it out. In 2016, TVCC broke Navarro’s seven-year reign. TVCC repeated its success in 2017 and claimed consecutive titles for the first time since 2001 and 2002.
Seven other NJCAA and California-based squads — many that previously have competed with Navarro and TVCC — were grouped this year into an “Intermediate Junior College” Division. Iowa Central graded at 94.68 ahead of Mt. San Antonio of Walnut, Ca., (90.17), Louisburg, NC, (89.70), Garden City CC, Ks., (89.37), El Paso CC, Tx., (88.33), Palomar College of San Marcos, Ca., (88.30), and Neosho County of Chanute, Ks., (84.75).