Five Special Olympics teams have been selected to represent the United States in the International Cheer Union World Championships

Bartlett, Tenn., February 27, 2019 – USA Cheer has announced that it will be fielding five teams in the Special Olympic team divisions at the 2019 International Cheer Union (ICU) World Cheerleading Championships, which takes place April 24 – 26, 2019 at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at the Walt Disney World® Resort.

The Special Olympic divisions at the ICU are for athletes with and without an Intellectual Disability. Last year, the ICU signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Special Olympics, creating more opportunities for athletes with intellectual disabilities through Special Olympics Unified Sports. USA Cheer, a member nation of the ICU, is committed to expanding opportunities for athletes of all abilities.

“We are extremely excited about the representation we will have in the Special Olympics division at the ICU Championships. These athletes, most with disabilities, work tremendously hard and we are happy to assist them to showcase their passion, ability, and energy on the global stage!” says Tony Nash, Director of US National Teams for USA Cheer. We are excited for our future and thrilled to give these athletes the platform to showcase their talent.”

This year’s Special Olympic divisions are coached by a diverse group of coaches from Illinois and Maryland. Unified Teams are comprised of athletes with and without disabilities; Traditional Teams are comprised of athletes with disabilities. Here are the 2019 Special Olympics teams:

Team Name                                                                                                       Head Coach                      City, State

US National Special Olympics Unified Intermediate Team                            Jacqueline Sanchez             Schaumberg, Ill.

US National Special Olympics Traditional Intermediate Team                     Roni Septoff                          Rockville, Md.

US National Special Olympics Unified Pom Team                                           Gayle Watterson                   Owings, Md.

US National Special Olympics Traditional Pom Team                                     Kelly Roule                            St. Charles, Ill.

US National Special Olympics Unified Hip Hop Team                                    Gayle Watterson                   Owings, Md.

For more information about USA Cheer, contact Sheila Noone,

About USA Cheer
The USA Federation for Sport Cheering is a not-for-profit organization and is the national governing body for all disciplines of cheerleading. USA Cheer exists to serve the entire cheer community, including club cheering (All Star), traditional school based cheer programs and the new sport of STUNT. USA Cheer has three primary objectives: help grow and develop interest and participation in Cheer throughout the United States; promote safety and safety education for cheer in the United States; and represent the United States of America in international cheer competitions.