PANAMA CITY BEACH, FL (WJHG/WECP) A local team is just about set to head south and take a shot at a world title.
A team called the "Black Diamonds" of World Class Athletics, a gym in Panama City Beach, is finishing up its preparations to compete at the Cheerleading World Championships down at the Disney Complext this weekend.
This "Black Diamonds" team made up of group of 13 to 18 year olds, some of whom travel from as far away as Dothan and South Walton County to cheer with the team.
This a third straight year at earning a shot to compete at this event, among the most prestigious in competitive cheer nationally or beyond!
The team's coach is CJ Green.
"Worlds is a big deal because it's the most competitive, the best of the best teams from across the world." coach CJ Green told us. "They go to Walt Disney World to compete to try to win a globe. Each team has to earn a bid. So throughout the season we base on our schedule off of bid events. If the teams do good enough, they get awarded a bid and they get to go to Disney World to compete with all the other teams that earned a bid throughout the country and even the world."
And earning this bid, as tough as it normally is, even tougher this year for the local squad, which had to deal with the storm in October and its after effects!
"This season was a bit of a rough start for us after Hurricane Michael we had some time off." coach Green says "Some of our athletes are getting back in the gear of things. Our athletes never lost hope in the coaches, in their gym, in their teammates. And they pushed and encouraged each other to move on and get their goal. And all of our teams got the end of their season goals."
More than 800 teams from over 40 countries are expected to compete at Worlds, with the sanctioning body being the U.S. All Star Federation.
The local team, the only one from our area that earned a bid, heads south tomorrow and Friday, the competition is Saturday and Sunday.