Two years since the team was formed, the University of Saskatchewan Dance Team has gone on to travel to Orlando for the University Worlds Cheer Championships 2020.
It seemed like a long shot for the pom and jazz section of the team to get the chance to face international competition. In order to be eligible for worlds, the team of 16 went to Lloydminster in December 2019 with a new routine they had to master in only two weeks.
It was well worth the trip as they won their bid and were on their way to UWCC 2020 in mid-January. This is only the second year since the team was created, so the team is looking forward to going up against other university teams, not to mention international competition.
The U of S team placed at the bottom among four teams at the world championship, but the group says it was a positive experience because going against Puerto Rico, Mexico and Florida State was an accomplishment in itself.
“All the points were pretty close so we’re really proud of how we did. And this was our first time at worlds so we weren’t expecting to walk away as World Champions, but we were really happy with our routine and how it looked,” said Jessica Parenteau, a member of the
U of S Dance Team.
Parenteau recounts that while all the teams were backstage waiting for the results, the U of S team was dancing. Soon enough, the team from Mexico joined, as did all the other international groups.
“It was just awesome that we didn’t even speak the same language, but we all got to come together and just dance. And that’s one thing that all of us knew how to do, and it was just universal,” Parenteau said.
While the Mexican and Puerto Rican team taught them dance moves from their home, the U of S Dance Team taught them how to line dance. Bonding over dancing with the international teams was one of the most memorable parts of the trip for Parenteau.
“We were just so happy. It didn’t even matter if we got fourth or first. We were just so happy that we got to experience that and enjoy our time there with them,” Parenteau said.
Next up for the team is the Strive Dance Competition in Toronto where they will face teams from across Canada.
Nykole King/ Editor-in-Chief
Photo: usaskdance/ Instagram