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New Richmond dance team takes fourth in state kick competition

The New Richmond dance team that performed at the WACPC state championships in La Crosse on Saturday includes: (front, l-r) Courtney Langer, Jensen Hagen, Christian Weaver, Emma Bakke, Erin Earley and Kailah Hartung; (center) Harley Leavens, Paris Johnson, Chloe Fankhauser, Deidre Cuno and Mattie Post Priller; (back) Kaiya Fox, Madi Sattler, Mattie Yehlik, Kaylynn Elkin, Alexis Anderson, Ellie Glorvigen and Coach Ali Saliny. 1 / 2
The Somerset dance team’s kick routine at state took on a dark theme, resulting in this serious look for the team photo. Team members include: (back, l-r) Cassie Tollakson, Hailey Nasgovitz, Gerquita Lauderdale and Joely Mart; (middle) Ashley Beasley, Mariah Fox and Bailey Mitchell; (front) Kacie Larkowski, Samantha Waalen, Gabrielle Vogel and Hayley Ueland. 2 / 2

It was another successful year for the New Richmond dance team at the WACPC state championships in La Crosse on Saturday.

The Tigers continued their tradition of earning state recognition by placing fourth in the Division 2 kick competition at the Wisconsin Association of Cheer/Pom Coaches annual state competition.

The Tigers also competed in the Division 3 Pom category, but weren’t able to rank among the top five teams in the division.

Somerset also advanced to state in the Division 2 kick category, but didn’t rank among the top five teams. Sixteen teams were competing in that event.

Both teams had dancers who were also competing for individual honors at the state meet. New Richmond’s Kailah Hartung and Somerset’s Gabbie Vogel were chosen as all-state dancers. Thirty girls from each division audition for all-state honors with the top 12 being selected as all-state dancers. Somerset’s Hayley Ueland also auditioned for all-state honors.

New Richmond’s tradition of bringing home honors in the kick category continued this year. New Richmond coach Ali Saliny said she received strong positive feedback from the judges on the team’s performances, especially the choreography of the routines.

“The team had their best performances on Saturday, peaking at just the right time. It was the perfect time to have everything come together, the team was so focused and well prepared, both physically and mentally,” Saliny said.

The state competition is the culmination of several months of arduous work by the dance teams. Saliny said it was a credit to the team’s seniors for how well the team grew together this season. The Tigers will graduate six seniors from this season’s squad.

“The seniors have been great leaders, especially our team captains, Emma Bakke and Jensen Hagen. Our captains have helped to create a strong team work ethic and a positive team dynamic. They are true leaders, in and out of practice,” Saliny said.

Somerset finished 11th among the 16 teams in the Division 2 kick event, according to Somerset coach Hailley Leverty.

“We had our best performances and we couldn’t be more proud,” Leverty said.

Vogel earned all-state honors for the second straight year. Vogel was given an additional honor when she was named one of the top seven soloists for the entire state competition.

The Middle Border Conference again competed at a high standard in the state meet. New Richmond was one of three MBC teams to bring home state honors. Prescott earned state honors with both of its routines, taking first place in the Division 4 Pom Division and second place in the Division 2 Jazz Division. Amery also was a state placewinner, earning fifth place in the Division 2 Hip Hop Division.

Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
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