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LIONETTES THIRD IN NATION --
Southeastern Louisiana University’s dance team, the Lionettes, placed third
in Division I of the 2003 College Cheerleading and Dance Team National
Championship in Orlando, Fla., January 10-11 Their award-winning performance
will be broadcast on ESPN television later this year. From left, front,
are Kim Dottolo, Ponchatoula, co-captain; Crystal Canepa, Meraux, captain;
Erin Anderson, Amite, co-captain; back, Tara Bordelon, Chalmette;
Andrea Zummo, Loranger; Heather Canepa, Meraux; Angela Nassar, Convent;
Alicia Oalmann, Meraux; Christi Parker, French Settlement; Jessy Shaw,
Slidell; Elizabeth LeBlanc, Zachary, and Amanda Baldo, Kenner.
SOUTHEASTERN LIONETTES PLACE THIRD IN
HAMMOND -- The Southeastern Louisiana
University Lionette Dance Team earned third place honors at the 2003 College
Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championship in Orlando, Fla., January
In only their third year of national
Universal Cheerleaders Association/Universal Dance Association competition,
the Southeastern dancers vied with teams from 27 other universities in
the category for NCAA Division I schools. As one of the top three finishers
in the division, they will appear on national sports network ESPN’s broadcast
of the competition, said the dance team’s director, Melissa Bordelon.
“We are so proud of the tremendous
strides the Lionette have made, going from last place out of 13 teams in
2001; to eighth place out of 19 teams last year, to third out of 27 teams
in 2003,” Bordelon said. She attributed the dancers’ success to the team's
focus on technique, conditioning and performance ability.
“We knew what it took to get
this far and we know what it takes to move up to first,” Bordelon said.
“Our commitment to improve our technique, conditioning and performance
ability and the support of the university, Lionette alumni and parents
enabled our girls to reach this level.”
The Lionettes who brought the
national honor back to Southeastern are Captain Crystal Canepa, Meraux;
Co-captains Erin Anderson, Amite, and Kim Dottolo, Ponchatoula; Andrea
Zummo, Loranger; Christi Parker, French Settlement; Jessy Shaw, Slidell;
Heather Canepa and Alicia Oalmann, also of Meraux; Amanda Baldo, Kenner;
Tara Bordelon, Chalmette; Angela Nassar, Convent; and Elizabeth LeBlanc,
“It was a dream come true,” said
Anderson, a graduating senior who has participated in all three years of
competition. “We all grew up watching these competitions on television.
We never thought it would be us and now it is.”
Bordelon said the Lionettes plan
to perform their award-winning routine for fans at an upcoming Lions basketball
game at the Southeastern University Center. “We’re also planning to
invite everyone to get together with us for a ‘viewing party’ when
the competition is aired on ESPN,” she said. The team has not yet been
notified of the broadcast date.
The Lionettes’ winning performance
had a “spider” theme and was danced to music from the recent box office
hit, “Spiderman”; No Doubts’ “Walking in a Spiderweb”; Alice Cooper’s “Black
Widow” and a rap version of “Ittsy Bittsy Spider.” Captain Crystal Canepa
designed the troupe’s costumes. The Lionettes worked with choreographer
Teams must submit an unedited
video of one of their routines to be considered for the competition. The
Lionettes placed fourth out of the 27 teams in the initial bid ranking.
Teams are judged on communication and projection, choreography, group execution,
dance technique and overall effect.
Two dozen Lionette alumni, family
and friends accompanied the team to the Florida competition. “We want to
specially thanks to all of our Lionette fans for helping to make this victory
possible,” Bordelon said.
Bordelon said the Lionettes worked
this year with Southeastern kinesiology professor Dan Hollander to get
in top condition for competition. “Dan has been making recommendations
to us throughout so that we could keep the girls healthy and safe and increase
their conditioning level,” Bordelon said.
“Dancers and cheerleaders are
some of the most versatile and powerful athletes that we are training today,”
said Hollander. “It’s amazing what they can do.”
He said the Lionettes’ condition
program began with a fitness assessment for each dancer and included a
running program of more than two miles four times a week and an exercise
program that targeted areas such as stamina and flexibility.
Bordelon said dancers interested
in becoming Lionettes can participate in the team’s annual “Lionette Warmup”
on February 8, an event that will prepare them for tryouts on April 2-5.
For information, contact Bordelon at 985-549-5678 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information about the UCA/UDA competition is available at www.varsity.com.
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