January 20, 2014
By Molly Reger '14 and Mike Killeen
The CSB dance team successfully defended its national championship in the Open Class Pom Division at the 2014 Universal Dance Association (UDA) College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championship at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Fla.
CSB topped second-place Orange Coast College (Costa Mesa, Calif.), third-place Minnesota State University Mankato and fourth-place St. Cloud State University. The final six teams were separated by less than a point, CSB co-coach Allie Seifert said.
CSB's team of 18 members also placed fifth in the Open Class Jazz Division.
The Open Class Pom Division competition began with 12 teams on Saturday, Jan. 18. Six teams advanced to the final round, with CSB resting first after the preliminary round.
"Because we won last year, we felt pressure going into the competition," Seifert said. "This is a new year with a new team and we felt the pressure of people watching us. We needed to step up to the challenge of performing and having the right mindset."
"I am proud that we accomplished our goal of defending our national championship title," CSB senior captain Kelsey Novak said. "The results directly reflect the intensity of the competition this year.
"This year there were more eyes on us and the pressure was intense. We knew we needed to remain calm and focused on our goal," Novak said.
"The biggest challenge has been to portray confidence both on and off stage, even when we felt intimidated," CSB junior captain Tori Grootwassink said.
Minnesota colleges took home five titles from the competition. The University of Minnesota won two titles in Division IA, and the University of St. Thomas captured two titles in the Open Class (Jazz and Hip-Hop divisions).
"We are proud to continue to represent not only our dance program and the College of Saint Benedict but Minnesota as well," Seifert said.
The CSB dance team was excited to bring home another title and display their new trophy."We are really excited about where we placed. It is something that we have worked very hard for," Seifert said. "This is a hard-working team that has been connected from day one. They have goals and visions and are dedicated to accomplishing them while also having fun and remaining positive."