By Jarred Jackson | Staff Writer
The RCC Cheer and Dance team recently competed in the 2012 Universal Cheer Association/Universal Dance Association Nationals Championships at Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL on Jan. 19th. Before leaving for competition the program put on a Goodbye Showcase on Sat. Jan. 12th at 7 p.m. to debut to family, friends, supporters, sponsors and fans what the team has been working on for the competition.
This was the program’s third trip to the UDC/UDA National Championships. Three new additions that were added to the program were announced and introduced to the crowd during the showcase: Dance coach Erica Goe and new cheer coach Eric Anderson who was not in attendance along with his assistant Brian Jones.
The show featured performances, prizes, an opportunity drawing for an iPad and much more.
The results for cheer in the finals were: Co-Ed was 4th while All Girl finished in 5th place. The dance team finished in 6th place compared to last years finish of 7th.
The dance team competed in the Open Jazz event with its 15 member competition team which included the first and only male dancer in the history of the program. When asked how the team was prepared for Nationals, Dance coach Kristin Mason said, “We started learning our routine in October which was finished by November and choreographed by one of the best in the business. Then we spent the next few months just picking apart the routine and making sure it was clean for the floor in Florida. Practices were long and at times. Challenging, but the team pulled through and did an amazing job.”
When asked about what it’s like having the first male dancer in the history of the program coach Mason said, “In the beginning it was a bit of a challenge just because I had never had to work with a male on the team before, but it has ended up being one of the best things.”
“Zack is such a strong male dancer and has brought an element to the team that has pushed us to the next level.”
For the first time in RCC history three full teams were taken to Florida for cheer. The cheerleaders competed in the All-Girl division with a team that consisted of 20 female athletes. They also competed in the Large Co-Ed division. The Co-Ed team consisted of nine male and seven female athletes.