When the UTC Sugar Mocs attended the annual dance and cheer camp sponsored by Universal Cheerleading Association and Universal Dance Association (UCA/UDA), they captured six first place trophies and one second place trophy. Ten different squads with 150 dancers participated on the campus of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
The Sugar Mocs competed against teams from the University of Kentucky, University of Alabama, Birmingham, Old Dominion University, University of South Florida, East Carolina University, Mississippi State and UTK for these awards: the superior trophy for performances by each individual team member for evaluations on routines learned during camp; the Leadership Trophy, voted on by all the other teams and given to the team exhibiting the most collegiate spirit during camp; Most Improved Program Award for the team who has attended a UDA camp in prior years and has shown great improvement in their overall dance program and the Coach’s Leadership Award. For performance and choreography on a fight song, the Sugar Mocs earned a second place trophy.
The Sugar Mocs earned first place in Performance Competition in the Open Division with a dance choreographed by current team member Diane Shelton and former Sugar Moc Shannon Wightman. In this competition, the schools were smaller.
“The team has worked hard on not only having skills and technique, but committing to school spirit, building enthusiasm in the crowd and being loyal to traditions,” said Terry Denniston, Sugar Mocs Coach and Executive Assistant to the Chancellor.
During the competition, Denniston said there is pressure on team members to learn several routines in a short period of time, perform the routines on the last day of the camp and then be evaluated for their efforts.
Denniston said seven of the 12 Sugar Mocs are freshmen on this year’s team, and they have demonstrated “they are excited and want to be a part of everything– they have a lot of school spirit.”
This is the inaugural year of the presentation of the Coach’s Leadership Award. Participating coaches decided that Denniston was the coach they most admired and was someone who helped not only coach her own team well, but helped other coaches improve their teams.
Back Row Standing, l-r: Shawna O’Neal, Tiffany Burris, Jennifer Cardwell,
Diane Shelton, Kelsey Rogers, Crystal Motley, Emily Ryans, Abby Bowman
Front Row Kneeling, l-r: Courtney Given, Caitlen Hoy, Camille Douglas, Lindsay Rieman