Suburban teams dance their way to wins at big competition
The northwest suburbs were well represented among the winners at the Team Dance Illinois Championships Sunday in Peoria.
Eight area dance teams left the Peoria Civic Center with at least one Illinois-shaped 1st place trophy.
Teams were grouped together based on the size of their high school and could choose to perform in one of six dance categories: open dance, hip-hop, poms, open poms, lyrical and kick.
Meagen Balzer, the coach of the Bartlett High School team, said her girls, who won top prize in both hip-hop and open dance, rose up to the level of competition.
"It was the best they'd performed on either routines," Balzer said.
Competitors had little time to waste once the day's events got underway.
From 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., 127 separate routines were performed by the participating teams, who each did a maximum of three routines in different categories throughout the day.
The Batavia High School junior varsity dance team didn't let a nearly five-hour long gap between performances prevent them from doing their best. The team earned first place for both of their performances, in open dance and open poms, and won the JV Grand Champion trophy for best junior varsity team overall.
The other suburban team to win a Grand Champion trophy was St. Charles North High School, which was best overall among large schools. They also won first place in the open pom category.
Other teams that won their categories, by division, were:
Division 3A: Wheaton-Warrenville High School, first place in poms; South Elgin High School, first place in lyrical.
Division 2A: Larkin High School, first place in open dance and lyrical; Montini Catholic High School, first place in poms and open poms; Batavia High School, first in open poms.
Junior Varsity: Aurora Central Catholic High School, first in hip-hop.