Biddeford, Hermon, Lisbon and Central Aroostook of Mars Hill will begin defense of their respective state cheerleading championships beginning on Saturday, Jan. 25 when the regional competitions will be held at the Augusta Civic Center and Cross Insurance Center in Bangor.

The state championship meets for the four classes will be held at the Augusta Civic Center on Saturday, Feb. 8.

The Classes B, C and D South and Class A North regional meets will be held in Augusta while the Classes B and C North and D North/South will take place at the Cross Insurance Center.

In Bangor, the Class B North competition will begin at 9 a.m. to be followed by D North/South at 11:15 and the C North at 1:45.

At the Augusta regionals, Class B South will kick off the day at 9 a.m. followed by Class A North (11:30), Class C South (2:30) and Class A South (5 p.m.).

A total of 12 teams will qualify for each state meet in classes A, B and C, six each from the North and South competitions.

Since Class D combines schools in the north and the south, only the top six teams will qualify for the state meet unless more than 10 schools participate in the regional meet. In that case, eight teams would advance to the state meet.

Class D North/South has 15 schools in it. According to the Maine Principals’ Association bulletin, Southern Aroostook of Dyer Brook has a team this season. It didn’t have one last season.

The state competition will begin at 10 a.m. with Class D, followed immediately by Class D.

The afternoon session for Classes B and C starts at 2 p.m.

Biddeford won its first A title since 2014 a year ago with defending state champ Bangor second and Lewiston winding up third. Lewiston had won six of seven state titles before being detrhoned by Bangor two years ago.

Hermon captured its third state B title in a row with Ellsworth second and Medomak Valley of Waldoboro third.

Lisbon dethroned Central of Corinth in C last season and collected its third state championship in five years. Sacopee Valley of South Hiram was second and Central finished third.

Central Aroostook’s state title in D was its sixth in a row and the Panthers became the first team since the inception of the state cheerleading championships to claim six straight. The MPA held its first state cheerleading competition in 1994.

Penobscot Valley High School of Howland was second and Machias finished third.