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updated: 2/4/2017 9:24 PM

Conant, Buffalo Grove place second, third in state cheerleading finals

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  • Conant High School cheerleaders celebrate finishing second in the their division at the Illinois High School Association's cheerleading finals Saturday in Bloomington.

      Conant High School cheerleaders celebrate finishing second in the their division at the Illinois High School Association's cheerleading finals Saturday in Bloomington.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • Conant cheerleaders enjoy their second-place finish in the coed category of the state championships Saturday in the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington.

      Conant cheerleaders enjoy their second-place finish in the coed category of the state championships Saturday in the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • Conant cheerleaders took home a second-place trophy Saturday at the state championships.

      Conant cheerleaders took home a second-place trophy Saturday at the state championships.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • "To walk away with second place is a dream come true," Conant coach Amanda Schweinebraten said of her squad's performance. Here, the team celebrates with the trophy.

      "To walk away with second place is a dream come true," Conant coach Amanda Schweinebraten said of her squad's performance. Here, the team celebrates with the trophy.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • Conant High School's squad performs during the state cheerleading finals Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington.

      Conant High School's squad performs during the state cheerleading finals Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • Buffalo Grove High School's coed team competes Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington. The squad won third place during the state competition.

      Buffalo Grove High School's coed team competes Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington. The squad won third place during the state competition.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • Buffalo Grove cheerleaders celebrate a third-place finish in the coed division at the state finals Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington.

      Buffalo Grove cheerleaders celebrate a third-place finish in the coed division at the state finals Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

  • Buffalo Grove cheerleaders celebrate a third-place finish in the Coed Team division at the IHSA Competitive Cheerleading finals Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington.

      Buffalo Grove cheerleaders celebrate a third-place finish in the Coed Team division at the IHSA Competitive Cheerleading finals Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington.
    Daniel White | Staff Photographer

 
Daily Herald report

Two suburban cheerleading squads finished in the top three of their divisions in the state championships Saturday in Bloomington.

The coed team from Conant High School in Hoffman Estates claimed the No. 2 spot after a trophy-winning routine in the U.S. Cellular Coliseum.

"We worked all summer, fall and winter to get to this point," said Amanda Schweinebraten, who coaches the team with her twin sister, Christina. "Clearly our kids put their heart on the mat. It wasn't our best performance, but the love was there, and the difficulty was there, so to walk away with second place is a dream come true."

The squad has its own preperformance ritual that helps build up some hype and involves a full-team chant. The coaches told them to rely on each other and their technique.

"If they believe in each other, the sky's the limit," Schweinebraten said.

Later Saturday night, the team planned to make a big entrance at a school dance with their new hardware.

"This is such a happy win after a year of knowing that this is something we wanted to achieve," Schweinebraten said.

Buffalo Grove's coed team, the returning state champions and a perennial favorite, placed third.

Other suburban squads ended the season with strong performances over two days of state competition.

Here are the teams who rounded out the top 10 in their divisions:

Coed: Stevenson, Lincolnshire (5th); Hoffman Estates (6th); South Elgin (8th); York, Elmhurst (10th).

Large: Neuqua Valley, Naperville (5th); Lake Zurich (7th); St. Charles East (8th); Prospect, Mt. Prospect (10th).

Medium: Lemont (1st); Antioch (4th); Crystal Lake Central (7th); Grayslake North (8th); Grayslake Central (10th).

Small: Timothy Christian, Elmhurst (8th)

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