01/18/13 – Pleasure Ridge Park Granted At-Large Berth to Competitive Cheer Championships

January 18, 2013 2012-2013 News Releases

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JANUARY 18, 2013

During the KHSAA Region 6 Competitive Cheer competition on Jan. 12, a disqualification ruling was made in the Super-Large All-Girl division with regard to a National Federation rule. At the time the ruling was made, and based upon prior information from the NFHS, a stunt performed by Pleasure Ridge Park was ruled illegal by the technical judges as performed, due to safety concerns.

“As the commissioner and I reviewed this situation, it became clear that this was not a judgment call. That distinction is important because judgment calls cannot be appealed per bylaw 16. Our judges correctly observed and administered penalties based on what they saw during the routine,” said Assistant Commissioner and cheer contact Butch Cope. “However, we later found that this specific situation had been interpreted differently as the year moved on and we were not made aware of the change in interpretation until this week.”

After reviewing the new interpretation Thursday night from the NFHS, and the detailed written accounts from the judges at last week’s Regional Championship, the KHSAA has made the decision to advance Pleasure Ridge Park to the Competitive Cheer Championships as an at-large participant.

“NFHS rules, as well as KHSAA rules, emphasize safety. At the time of the competition, and based upon previous rules and interpretations from the NFHS, we determined the KHSAA judges ruled correctly. Unfortunately, there had been changes to interpretations to the rules on a national level throughout the year that had not yet necessarily been clearly communicated to us,” said KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett. “Had it not been for the recent ruling at the competition, this squad would have scored first in the event and advanced to the state championships. Because of the possibility of miscommunication or a misapplication of the rules, and based solely on the accurately submitted written reports by the judges and the new interpretations, we have decided to act in the best interest of the students and advance the squad to the state championship. Whenever this specific set of circumstances occur to create the possibility of doubt, we should always endeavor to err on the side of the kids. This has nothing to do with the great performances of any other squad, but is solely based on this recent interpretation revision.”

Pleasure Ridge Park, therefore, will compete in the KHSAA 2A All-Girl Super-Large Division at the Championships, scheduled to be held on Saturday, Jan. 26 in Bowling Green. No adjustment to the order of finish or other qualifying teams from the regional event will be made.

After reviewing the PRP circumstances and ruling, the KHSAA reviewed all other disqualifications from regional competitions to date to ensure there were no like situations. No other situation occurred specific to this particular rule or new interpretations. The KHSAA will also be asking the NFHS rules committee for additional clarity in the 2013-2014 rules publications to help prevent any reoccurrence of this type of situation.