April 8, 2005
After making the finals at the National Cheerleaders Association nationals competition by the narrowest of margins on Thursday, the Purdue spirit squad turned in a solid performance to finish sixth in the nation on Friday in Daytona Beach, Fla.
The Boilermaker cheerleaders improved two places from an eighth-place finish in the preliminaries, finishing 2/100s of a point out of fifth place. The top five squads are featured in an April 23 telecast on CBS, and the squad had set a top-five finish as one of its goals for the year.
Purdue also finished in sixth in 2003, after finishing second in the nation in 2002.
"The team is extremely happy with the performance and how much we improved from the preliminaries," said Elvis Moya, spirit coordinator and cheer coach. "We showed that we can compete with the best programs in the country."
Of the 15 schools that competed in the preliminaries, eight made the initial cut. They were, in order, Clemson, Oklahoma, Louisville, North Carolina State, Oklahoma State, Houston, Middle Tennessee State and Purdue. The remaining squads were given the chance to perform their routine again, with one team - Virginia Tech - advancing after notching the best score.
In the finals on Friday, Louisville defended its national title from 2004, followed by Clemson, Oklahoma State, Houston, North Carolina State, Purdue, Virginia Tech, Oklahoma and Middle Tennessee State.