The Sassy Cats, Georgia College & State University’s dance team, finished 10th inthe semifinals of the NCAA Division II National Dance Team Competition last week.
This was the first time the team competed in nationals. The top nine teams continued to the finals, leaving the team only one place short of final competion.
The team left early Thursday morning from the Atlanta Airport for Orlando, the sire of the tournament on Friday and Saturday.
In order to make it to the Nationals, the Sassy Cats made a video, which was bid on by the judges. With this video, they were accepted to the Semi-finals. The Sassy Cats competed in the Open division. The Open division consists of 21 teams from all over the United States. “The teams at the Nationals were more experienced and more competitive then our competition at the Peach Belt conference last spring,” said coach Bonni Bilgler.
The Sassy Cats were champions of the Peach Belt Athletic Conference last spring. Also, USC Aiken and Columbus State University competed against the Sassy Cats in both events.
The Sassy Cats’ routine was just under 2 minutes in length and consisted of a difficult mix of hip-hop and technical jazz, Bigler said. Music included Ozzy Osborne’s “Crazy Train,” Ricky “Martin’s “She Bangs, Soul Decisions’ “Faded,” Jennifer Lopez’s “My Love Don’t Cost a Thing,” “Fame,” and ended with Outcast’s “Bombs over Baghdad.”
Bigler said she is looking forward to next year’s Nationals. She said she believes they will make the finals next year, adding that the Sassy Cats are a young team. They also a lot of their good dancers last year, and they are in a period of rebuilding right now. Also, Ashley Lundell and Betty Brownlee were unable to attend the Nationals. Wendy Batson said the Sassy Cats had only worked on the routine for two and half weeks. Next year, they plan to start practicing in July, so they will be more prepared for the Nationals.
The Sassy Cats enjoyed performing at the Nationals. Bigler said she was surprised at the crowd response they received at the Nationals. The crowd response helped the team’s energy to raise and to motivate them.
Allyson Gauthareaux said she viewed going to the Nationals as an honor and a privilege. She said they did as well as they expected to, and Wendy, their captain, viewed the Nationals as an eye-opening experience for the Sassy Cats. Team members said they are grateful to GC&SU for its support.