The Mound Westonka High School Hawkettes dance team was thrilled to once again be named Section Champion at the 3AA Dance Team Championships, which were held at Waconia High School on Feb. 3. The Hawkettes competed in a field of 14 teams, made up of most Wright County Conference teams, along with other strong competitors from Marshall and Belle Plaine.
The Hawkettes felt confident about the possibility of advancing to the MSHSL State Dance Team Tournament in jazz after a strong season in which they secured the WCC jazz title. However, at sections, nothing is a given, and teams were bringing their best performances of the season. After a nearly flawless, powerful performance to “Skyfall,” the Hawkettes knew they had a good shot at advancing to state in jazz for the 12th consecutive year.
“This young jazz team knew that they had some big shoes to fill after the success of last year’s jazz team,” said coach Molly Carlson said. “They have gone beyond filling those shoes this season. We could not be more proud of their determination and hard work!”
In the kick division, any of the top six teams in Section 3AA had a very strong chance of qualifying for one of the top three spots. The Hawkettes knew that their performance needed to be full of energy, precision and technique – they needed to have their best performance of the season in order to qualify for state. Their performance to a medley of songs entitled “”Candy” was indeed their best performance of the season.
“The girls really found their confidence in kick, and it showed in their performance,” said Carlson. “The team, which consists of a very young group, had been working tirelessly on technique and power. It really came together in their sections performance!”
At the awards ceremony, the Hawkettes were named Section Champions in jazz with the lowest amount of possible rank points in the competition (4). This means that all seven of the judges had the Hawkettes in first place. Other teams qualifying for state in jazz were Waconia (10) and Marshall (12).
In kick, it was announced that there was a tie for first place between Mound Westonka and Marshall, who both finished the competition with 7.5 rank points. Marshall won the tie-breaker, and the Hawkettes were announced in second place. Orono came in a very close third, with 8.5 rank points.
State Dance Tournament Information
The 2018 MSHSL State Dance Team Tournament will be held at Target Center in Minneapolis Feb. 16 and 17. The state jazz tournament will take place on Friday, Feb. 16 at 2 p.m., with the Hawkettes performing right away at 2 p.m. The state kick tournament will be held Saturday, Feb. 17 at 2 p.m, and the Hawkettes will take the floor at 3 p.m.
General admission tickets for the tournament are $14 for adults and $9 for students. More information can be found on the Target Center website.