Oklahoma Dance Teams Take Honors at UDA Nationals

Thursday, July 28th 2011, 6:06 pm

By: News On 6

Originally Published: Feb 15, 2011 11:20 AM CDT

Layna Dewell
Oklahoma Sports Staff Writer

ORLANDO, Florida—Fourteen Oklahoma High School dance teams competed in the 2011 UDA National Dance Team Championships in Orlando and several squads received national recognition for their performances.

The squads traveled to Walt Disney World, where more than 300 high school and all-star dance teams from across the nation gathered to compete in up to two of four divisions including jazz, hip hop, pom and high kick.

Below is a list of Oklahoma squads that competed in this year’s nationals and how they finished:

Booker T. Washington-Competed in Large Varsity Pom
Edison High School Freshman-8th Place Jr. High Pom,
Edison High School Varsity- 30th Place Small Varsity Pom
Jenks Freshman-6th Place Junior High Pom, 7th Place Junior High Jazz
Jenks Junior Varsity-2nd place Junior Varsity Pom, semifinalist in Junior Varsity Jazz
Jenks High School- Competed in Large Varsity Pom and Large Varsity Jazz
McAlester High School-Made semifinals in Large Varsity Hip Hop and Large Varsity Pom
Memorial High School-Competed in Small Varstiy Pom and Small Varsity Hip Hop
Moore High School-Competed in Small Varsity Hip Hop
Nathan Hale High School- 7th Place Small Varsity Hip Hop
Southmoore High School- 6th in Small Varsity Hip Hop, 11th Place Small Varsity Jazz
Stillwater High School-Made the quarterfinals in Small Varsity Hip Hop
Union High School-10th Place large Varsity Pom
Westmoore High School- 1st Place Large Varsity Hip Hop, 4th Place Large Varsity Jazz,

The Westmoore high school varsity squad, coached by Natalie Zielny, received the top honors taking first place in the large varsity hip hop division. The Jaguars also competed in jazz where they took fourth place.

Westmoore is no stranger to the national competition stage. This year’s hip hop title is the fifth year in a row the Jaguars have brought home a National Title and the fourth consecutive year in the hip hop division.

“I am so proud of the team and all they have accomplished,” said Coach Zielny. “This team has made a name for itself on the national level as dance champions and has done so while remaining true to the job of promoting school spirit. They are truly well-rounded individuals with amazing work ethic and determination.”

Coach Zielny has been with the team for two seasons, and the squad’s choreographer, Emily Shock, has been with the team for eight years.

Members of the national championship squad include:
Destiny Schmidt, Jordan Jackson, Kelsea Lakin, Riley Cole, Kaitlyn Bruza, Lainie Elliott, Hannah Scott, Jazmine Moreno, Mikella Green, Kaitlyn Rogers, Kortnei Bruza, Madison Galier, Jillian Buxton, Anna Elliott, Erica Welch, and Sara Berry-Lee.

The Jenks JV squad had a big performance at nationals as they took second place in the junior varsity pom division. The Trojan Junior Varsity, coached by Sheri Sprague, also competed in the JV jazz division where they also made the semifinals.

The Jenks freshman squad took two dances to nationals and made finals in both the pom and jazz divisions. In the end, they placed 6th in pom and 7th in jazz. The squad is coached by Erin O'Toole and members include: Kelsey Billings, Claire Holloway, Aubrey Hellwege, Gabbi Rao, Cory Fulton, Janey Lundstrom and Brittany Free.

The Southmoore Sabercats also participated in this year’s national competition in small varsity hip hop as well as small varsity jazz. The Sabercats, coached by Laura Rousseau, took sixth place in hip hop and 11th place in jazz.

The Edison Eagles freshman team competed in the junior high pom division. The Eagles, coached by Sarah Ivie, finished eighth overall in pom.

Nathan Hale High School, coached by Lynda Holt, attended the UDA National competition for the second year in a row and advanced to the hip hop finals. The Rangers squad finished seventh overall, the highest ranking the team has ever earned. For more on the Ranger Pom squad and how they are overcoming obstacles to achieve their goals click here.

The Tulsa Union varsity squad, coached by Emily Jones took 10th place at nationals in the large varsity pom division.

The Edison varsity squad, also coached by Sarah Ivie, competed in the small varsity pom division where they took 30th place.

The Jenks Trojans varsity squad, coached by Kristin Phibbs, competed in large varsity pom and large varsity jazz where they made the semifinals.

The Stillwater Pom Squad competed in the small varsity pom division as well as the small varsity hip hop division where they made the semifinals. The Pioneer squad, coached by Sara Ehrlich, also competed in the Oklahoma State Dance Team Championship in December 2010 where they were runners up in the small varsity pom division and third runner up in small varsity hip hop.

McAlester’s varsity squad, coached by Peni Oss, competed in large varsity hip hop and pom divisions. The Buffaloes did a good job at nationals and although they did not make the finals, their semifinal performance in pom was much deserved.

Booker T. Washington, coached by CaitlinHoagland participated in nationals with their performance in the large varsity pom division.

Tulsa Memorial, coached byCara Keathley and Jennifer Morris, competed in the small varsity pom and hip hop divisions while Moore High School, coached by Natasha Deinhardt also competed in the small varsity hip hop division.

If you have pictures or detailed information on a dance squad not included in this article please e-mail the information to producers@Oklahoma Sports.

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