The Brainerd Warrior dance team's hard work has paid off once again.
The dance team earned its spot at state in both high kick and jazz/funk for the second year in a row. Brainerd earned its spot by beating out some tough teams Saturday at the section 3-3A meet at Elk River High School. Brainerd took third place in both high kick and jazz/funk.
Head Coach Cindy Clough said she's thrilled that the team will advance to state and she's proud of the girls, who were screaming and jumping up and down with joy of their accomplishment.
"They worked so hard this week," said Clough. "It was a long day and it was like a roller-coaster ride. You never know what the judges will do. You're always a little nervous, but I thought we were strong enough to get in.
The Warrior dance team struck their final pose in the varsity kick division at the section meet Saturday in Elk River. The Kixters earned a trip to the state competition Feb. 15-16 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.» Purchase reprints of this photo.
Brainerd Dispatch/Steve Kohls
"There were a lot of tough teams. Each year everyone gets better. It's a tough section."
Thirteen teams competed in the section meet and the top three teams in each category advance to state, which will be Feb. 18-19 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Joining Brainerd at state in kick will be St. Cloud Tech and Elk River. In jazz, St. Cloud Tech and Blaine will advance to state.
Clough said in kick the team had a fall, which cost them seven total points, but their routine was strong overall.
"The girls had great energy and their timing was right on," said Clough.
Warrior dance team members Brittney Schubert (left) and Kelsey Johnson showed their excitement after earning a trip to state at the section meet.» Purchase reprints of this photo.
Brainerd Dispatch/Steve Kohls
The high kick results were St. Cloud Tech in first place with five ranking points; Elk River, second, 8.5 points; Brainerd, third, 9.5; Blaine, fourth, 12; Anoka, fifth, 20; Champlin Park, sixth, 24; Andover, seventh, 28; Moorhead, eighth, 33; Alexandria, ninth, 36; St. Francis, 10th, 37; Coon Rapids, 11th, 42.5; Becker/Princeton, 12th, 48; and Cambridge, 13th, 52.
In jazz, Clough said the team was strong in their technique and choreography.
"Ali (Clough's daughter, a 2007 BHS graduate, who was on the dance team) did a lot of the choreography and she did it in her style, very quirky," said Clough. "It was edgy. Lots of leaps and jumps ... It took a lot of strength and the team spent a lot of time in the studio. The judges liked the routine."
The jazz/high funk results were Blaine in first with four ranking points; St. Cloud Tech, second, 9.5; Brainerd, third, 11.5; Anoka, fourth, 14; Elk River, fifth, 18; Andover, sixth, 24; Champlin Park, seventh, 28; Moorhead, eighth, 32; Coon Rapids, ninth, 36.5; St. Francis, 10th, 37.5; Alexandria, 11th, 44; Becker/Princeton, 12th, 48; and Cambridge, 13th, 52.
The team has two weeks to prepare for state.
"We'll work more on our accuracy and timing," said Clough. "We'll clean up our routines. We haven't given jazz a fair shake so we'll also spend more time on that.
JENNIFER STOCKINGER may be reached at email@example.com or 855-5851.
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