Dance, cheer members hold tryouts for new season

by Tim LoneStaff Writer

The dance and cheer teams wrapped up their season last month with the end of the end of the basketball season. But just when the members thought they could relax, they had to come right back and get ready for tryouts for the upcoming year.

“The year went really well,” sophomore Alyssa Keninger said. “We placed third in both jazz and pom at the state competition in December.”

The high place at state, Keninger said, was achieved not only through the hard work the members put in, but also their talent as a team.

“We had a high level of talent this year and were able to place in both routines we took to state at Veterans’ Memorial Auditorium,” Keninger said.

Sophomore Rachel Mooty also thought that their year went really well.

“This year went really well for us,” Mooty said. “One of the things we are most proud of is the fact that we get to sit on the floor during the home basketball games. At other private schools, the cheerleaders and dancers do not have the opportunity to do so.”

Another team that fans saw beside the court at the games was the cheer team, led by senior Laura Anderson.

“This year went great,” Anderson said. “We had many new, enthusiastic girls added with returnees, who all brought a lot to the squad. Throughout the year we all worked hard and had a lot of fun together.”

Just when the members thought they could rest, however, they had to come back and get ready for tryouts. Tryouts will be held this Friday and Saturday, April 3-4.

“During tryouts we are always looking for someone who has rhythm for cheers and dances and we also look for jumping ability,” Anderson said. “Also, our coach is present throughout the entire process so she can evaluate how well everyone works together and their enthusiasm.”

After tryouts take place, there is usually a short period between tryout date and the date the girls are notified if they are a part of the new squad. The set number of members is unknown.

“With cheerleading, it is our coach’s discretion how many girls she takes,” Anderson said. “She will only take the number of girls she feels matches her criteria for the squad. Some years we have anywhere from 12-18 girls.”

While the dance team emphasizes many of the same qualities in its members, the two tryouts are very different.

“Coach looks for girls who would be an asset to the team,” Keninger said. “Girls with a dance style the fits well into the team as well as technique including leaps and turns. Showmanship is also important.”

While these skills are important, Mooty said, they are also looking for a well-rounded dancer that can combine these skills with other elements.

“The judges look for technical elements and showmanship,” Mooty said. “The dancers are expected to do different jumps, leaps and turns along with learning a dance routine that they will perform on the day of tryouts.”

The dance team also finds out a few weeks after tryouts who makes it, but this year’s tryouts are different from those of past years.

“This year is going to be different than past years because we are doing a two-day tryout,” Mooty said. “We will learn our routine and skills on Friday and then have tryouts Saturday.”

Any student that wishes to is encouraged to try out for either team.