It’s official: Essex is home to the best high school cheerleaders in Baltimore County.

Two schools separated by less than a mile brought home their respective county cheerleading championships from the competition last week at Dundalk High.

Kenwood won the Class 3A/4A crown, while Eastern Tech took the Class 1A/2A title.

The Bluebirds upset five-time defending county champ Perry Hall by a slim margin, 116.7 to 116.05.

Patapsco was third in Class 3A/4A with a score of 110.95.

“This is Kenwood varsity’s first county championship since 2011, reclaiming the Kenwood High Cheerleading legacy,” Bluebird coach Naomi Richardson said.

Kenwood was to compete in the regional semi-finals on Wednesday at Harford Community College/

Eastern Tech, which has been at or near the top of the county Class 1A/2A competition for years, posted the highest overall score at the county championships: 123.1.

Hereford finished second on Class 1A/2A with a score of 114.9, while Sparrows Point was third with a score of 107.8.

The Mavericks also advanced to this week’s regional competition.

Eastern Tech athletic director David Deutsch was asked how a technical school became a cheerleading power.

“We have elite coaches who trust and empower the athletes to bring ideas to perform,” he said. “The athletes are highly committed and work with a high level of focus, working as one unit.

“This group has consistently amazed me in my 18 months here. Not only are they exceptional student-athletes, but they are exceptional people, also.”

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