On Friday, Dec. 6, 2019, Northwestern’s Red Raider Dance Team competed at the Iowa State Dance & Drill Team Association’s competition in Des Moines, Iowa. Eleven dancers from NW represented the college at Wells Fargo Arena. The two-minute routine was the culmination of four months of regular dance team practice. In the NAIA jazz category, NW dance placed sixth of seven teams. With a final total of 250.5 points, the team placed ahead of Clarke University with 246 points. St. Ambrose University lead NAIA jazz with 266.5 points.
NW dancers also competed in the NAIA hip hop category, placing fifth out of six competing teams. With 247.5 points, NW beat out William Penn University with 242 points. Again, St. Ambrose University lead the competition with 270 points to win.
“My favorite part of competitions is that we get to see our hard work out there on the floor,” said senior Sarah Coppock. “I love to give a good performance with my teammates right next to me. I also love the opportunity to hear from the judges to help us improve for the following competitions.”
Senior Alexis Karsjens said, “I love it because I get to spend time with people that I consider my sisters. We get to reap the rewards and feel the heartache together.”
The dance team’s competition season is not done yet. The Red Raider Dance Team will compete in a total of three duels with other schools in the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC). After these duels, the team will then compete in the GPAC competition against all schools in the GPAC.
The final competition is Regionals. This competition tests the team mentally and physically as they perform the routine twice for the judges.
“Our small team has stepped up to the plate in filling in the roles of this past year’s graduating seniors.” said Coach Taylor Barthman. “Everyone has meshed together as a whole to perform different skills as a team. It doesn’t matter who’s the best turner or the best jumper, we are just one team.”
The Red Raider Dance Team’s season comes to an end at the end of the year showcase on February 21 at 7:00 p.m. where they will perform all of their routines from this year.