2nd update (10/16):
UP has formally filed complaints over the judges’ decision. I definitely support this move and their plans to boycott next year’s competition if their questions aren’t addressed.
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UP Pep Squad’s stunts, tosses, and pyramids are posted here. Success rate: 100 percent.
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It’s hard to make sense of this year’s UAAP Cheerdancing Competition.
In 2013, with the more difficult Party routine, UP had to play bridesmaid to NU because of the former’s performance errors.
Last year, NU had a more difficult routine and relatively clean performance (notwithstanding its 15-point penalty), so it made sense that they were the champions.
It seemed then that striking that balance between difficulty and cleanliness was the winning formula to win the championship. After all, what’s the point of having difficult stunts if you can’t execute them properly? In sports, a score is earned not by effort but by execution.
This is why I was confident about ranking Saturday’s competition as follows: UP, UST, NU.
UST was pristine in its performance but its routine didn’t have as much difficulty in its routine relative to the two schools. NU had more difficult stunts in some areas (tumblings and tosses), but overall, its routine was marred by many errors.
UP’s, while not error-free, still had a high degree of difficulty (transitions/mountings, partner stunts, and pyramids). In fact, it earned no deductions, according to this scoresheet, which makes all this all the more a mystery.
When UP was announced third placers, I was in shock, but in my head, I was trying to be objective and make sense of the judging, hence my tempered tweet at that point:
I was in no way conceding that NU had a better performance than UP, but I figured that okay, maybe UST won first place for the cleanliness in its execution.
But when UST was announced as second placers, the gloves were off:
There had been many tweets saying it was a “cooking show,” which implied that the judges were bribed. I don’t personally know the judges, but I trust that these are people with high integrity, at least on paper. So no, I refuse to acknowledge such a below-the-belt accusation. I would rather question the judging process.
The criteria for judging have undergone many iterations, mainly to address accusations of biased judging and other unpopular decisions in the past. The UAAP league has recently settled with having one judge scoring just one specific category for the technical aspects of cheerleading, and another set of judges for dance. No one is judging the performance in its entirety; the winner is determined not as a whole, but by the sum of its parts.
Hence, you have, what in my opinion, is the worst winning routine of UAAP Cheerdance.
I give you your 2015 champion:
Yep, that’s 30 seconds’ worth of errors. Actually, even if you judge this on a per category basis, I find the scores questionable. NU topped the pyramid category – please point me to exactly which pyramid they may have earned that many points in terms of successful execution, not failed attempts.