LUMBERTON — Cameron Williamson made Lumberton High School history recently, becoming the first cheerleader from the school to be named all-state.
Along with earning the recognition of being one of the best cheerleaders in the state by receiving all-state honors from the North Carolina Cheerleading Coaches Association, the 11th-grader also will cheer at the football and basketball East-West all-star games. Both games will be played in Greensboro during July.
“It’s a great honor because no one has ever done it from Lumberton before,” Williamson said. “We didn’t really know what to expect. So, having the opportunity is just amazing and I didn’t expect it all.”
Williamson has been cheering for more than four years, and cheering competitively since the eighth grade. She said her tryout in front of cheerleading coaches she didn’t know was the most nerve-wracking of her career.
“I sent in a video for all-region, and once I made all-region we had the opportunity to try out for all-state,” Williamson said. “It was an all-day thing, and we had to show them all our skills and learn to cheer and dance. A few people judged us and we found out two weeks after.”
Williamson tried out in February at Apex High Schools with teammates Lauren Thorndyke and Caleigh Britt. The tryouts included doing two or more jumps connected and one had to be a toe touch, a dance, standing tumbling on gym floor with no mat and running tumbling on gym floor with no mat.
Williamson was one of the 28 cheerleaders selected as all-state.
“I’m just hoping that people will continue to try out next year and for years to come, and hopefully we will have more people from the high school,” she said.
Jamie Hughes, who has been the Lumberton cheerleading coach for 10 years, said Williamson’s skill set helped her attain the mark that had never been reached by Pirate cheerleaders before.
“She’s just an all-around cheerleader that appeals. She’s a great tumbler and has a great attitude,” Hughes said. “She’s a good, skilled cheerleader and deserved the opportunity. We are proud of her.”
Williamson accomplishment is a long time coming from a program that has been established, Hughes said.
“I’ve always felt that the coaches before me, Lynn Hinson and Darlene Scott, they really built a good program here,” Hughes said. “We’ve always had girls that had a lot of talent. It’s an honor to coach a kid that has the skill level to get there, and it’s a group effort.”
Jonathan Bym can be reached at 910-816-1977 or by email at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @Jonathan_Bym.