The Panther Cheer Club from Carl Sandburg Middle School in Alexandria took home top honors this weekend, March 29 and 30, at the annual Battle at the Capitol, a destination national performance cheerleading and dance championship. The hometown Panthers earned a first-place finish and garnered over the two-day competition the highest overall combined score of all the middle schools that competed at the event, which included teams who traveled from Pennsylvania, Maryland, and New York. The Panthers also received a bid to attend the invitation-only U.S. Finals competition that will be held in Virginia Beach on May 3. This was the second weekend of wins for the team, who also took home championship T-shirts on March 22 at the Live! Cheer and Dance Championship held at the convention center in Washington, D.C. The team has been training all season in performance cheerleading, which entails an athletic routine that includes tumbling, stunting, and dance. For more information and to view a video of their winning performance, visit www.panthercheerclub.org.