Updated January 18, 2023, 7:20 am

The UIL Spirit State Championships is an annual competition that was first held at the state level in 2015-16. The competition this year was held at the Fort Worth Convention Center as in past years. The event ran from January 12-14. Class 4A D1 competitions for the Kennedale team were held on January 13.

Wildcats with a strong showing in the semi-finals

There were 51 teams from across the state that qualified in the 4A – D1 event. Of that number, 20 schools advanced to the finals. This included the Kennedale team on the strength of a 199.20 combined score in the semifinals. This was a 6th place score overall in the first round. The top score in the semi-finals was 208.30 by Comal Canyon Lake HS. The semifinals included three categories – Fight Song, Band Chant, and Crowd leading.

Finals were a turnaround

Those who follow these things, know what happens in the semis is not always what happens in the finals. In the finals, there are just two categories that count in the totals. These include an average of the Fight Song and Band Challenge along with the average of Crowd Leading.

Mabank won the 4A D1 finals this year with a score of 92.83. Completing the top five were Orange Little Cypress-Maurice (90.53), Lampasas 89.87, Lumberton 88.70, and Celina (88.03).

Kennedale came in at 14 with a final score of 83.73. The only other Dallas-Fort Worth 4A school in the top 20 included #20 Dallas Carter (77.83). See results here.

Overall State COED Champion – a 4-peat

The overall coed finals champion was Keller Fossil Ridge. This was the fourth year in a row for the Keller team. Coming in second was FTW Arlington Heights. Fossil Ridge will move on to compete in the Nationals held in Orlando Florida. The Keller team has finished in second place at the nationals for the past two years. See results here. Note: The coach, Victoria (Pearce) Butler, of the Keller ISD Fossil Ridge Coed State Championship team is a Kennedale Alumni (2010).

Kennedale has finished in the top 25 five times

Kennedale has a history with the UIL Cheer State Championships. Besides the #14 finish this year, the Wildcats finished 19th in 2019-20 and 23rd in 2018-19. In 2016-17, a team from Kennedale finished 13th with a score of 82.85 The best finish for any Wildcat Cheer team was in 2015-16 when Kennedale finished in 4th place with a score of 93.6.

2022-23 winners by UIL Division …

State Divisional Winners in the following classifications include Tomball Memorial (6A D1), Fort Worth Paschal (6A D2), Friendswood (5A D1), San Antonio Alamo Heights (5A D2), Mabank (4A D1), Lago Vista (4A D2), Mount Vernon (3A D1), Jacksboro (3A D2), Falls City (2A) and Munday (1A).