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Silver Stars Takes Fifth at Nationals


The Silver Stars made program history by being the first varsity team to qualify for Finals at the National Dance Team Competition (NDTC) in Orlando, Florida. 

On Feb. 1 the Silver Stars competed their jazz, pom, and gameday routines at the NDTC competition. They advanced with their Small D2 Game Day Finals routine and placed fifth in their category. Head Coach Erin Taylor said it was a long-term goal for the program to advance to the final round. 

“It was something we had strived for ever since we started going to UDA (Universal Dance Association). I have thought we’ve been there before and we were trying not to get our hopes up so it was a very rewarding feeling,” Taylor said.

Their game day routine consisted of Rockwood Summit’s Fight Song cheer, one additional sideline cheer, and a performance dance. Senior Molly Berra said the end was the strongest part of their routine.

“I think we all liked our performance routine. The choreography was very good because we got it professionally choreographed this year. It had a lot of fun tricks and visuals,” Berra said.

With Game Day being the team’s final performance and final placement announcement of the day, Taylor said that led to a lot of stress.

“It was a lot of building anxiety because it was a little late…but I’m really glad we were able to get back to the hotel room so that we could be all together,” Taylor said. 

First-year varsity freshman Reilly Lechner said she and the team were excited about the win.

“[There were] tears, screaming, laying on the ground, crying, hugging, and a lot of tears of joy… It was an amazing first Nationals experience and I love my team,” Reilly said.

The team built off their work from past seasons, Taylor said, and worked to improve themselves.

“[We] really pushed ourselves more and more and added to the things we were doing well in previous years. It’s all of the work we did in those years that made this year possible,” Taylor said.  

Junior Amelia Lechner said the team had ambition going into the Nationals competition.

“I think the team was a lot more motivated this year towards it because it was something that felt real. What motivated me personally was to make my team and Silver Stars alumni proud,” Amelia said. 

Senior Mackenzie Bowen said that she wanted to move on for her senior year.

“Because it’s my last year I felt more motivated to move on because I won’t get another chance like this,” Bowen said. 

Overall, the team shared the same goal, Taylor said, to make it to finals

“I think we had a lot of common goals that we discussed and kept bringing up that these were our common goals throughout the year. One of those goals was to dance on Saturday and that was really pushing us in our routines,” Taylor said. 

The Silver Stars went on to compete at the Missouri State competition on February 24th and placed 3rd with Jazz.

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About the Contributor
Johanna Kruyne, Of The Talon staff
  • Class of 2025
  • High School involvement: FBLA Vice President, StuCo, NHS
  • Favorite Song: "I Know the End" by Phoebe Bridgers, Favorite Movie: 10 Things I Hate About You, Favorite Artist: Taylor Swift

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