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UW-Fox Dance Team Headed to National Competition

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While the local weather outside may be frightful, some students from the University of Wisconsin-Fox Valley have their sights set on being in the sunny south next month. The UWFox Cyclone Dance Team has been selected to participate in the 2001 College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championship, being held in Orlando, FL, January 11-14.

"To qualify for the competition, we had to send in a videotape of our routine," according to Denise Naparella, Dance Team Coach. "The higher the score or rating that a team receives from their videotaped performance, the more incentives that are offered to that team to participate. The incentives really are the costs involved in the trip."

"Up to14 members are allowed on each team," Naparella explained. "For our presentation video, we had each dance team member do an individual tryout to get on the video. We have 11 members, out of 16, appearing on our video."

"The national panel of judges reviews each tape and decides whether or not to extend an invitation to a team. Once you get to the competition, all the teams go through a preliminary round competition. If the judges give a team a good score, the team gets bumped up to the next round," the coach elaborated.

The dance team competition is being staged at the MGM Studios and the Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando. The Cyclone Dance Team is currently in the midst of a vigorous fund-raising effort to cover their round trip individual expenses. "Our goal is to raise approximately $1,000 per girl," Naparella stated. "We’re doing brat fry's, selling candy bars and baked goods, and doing all sorts of promotions. Each member of the Dance Team is doing her part to make a contribution to the effort."

Naparella is pulling double-duty at the Menasha campus. While she is the Dance Team Coach, she is also a full time student. The 24 year-old brings experience to her coaching role from her days in the show choir at Bonduel HS. She was involved in musical instrumentals and solos, played clarinet, percussion, piano, bass, and sang soprano. She's also been involved athletically at UWFox, where she participated intercollegiately on the women's basketball and volleyball teams, 1998-2000.

"Right now, the Dance Team performs at all UWFox home basketball games…men's and women's. We practice about 15 hours per week, that includes two hours on Mondays, two and a half hours on Thursday and Sunday nights, and have some four hour practices on Saturday," Naparella shared.

Members of the Cyclone Dance Team include:

  • Angela Bergner, freshman, Menasha;
  • Melissa Depner, freshman, Menasha;
  • Tracey Dietrich, freshman, Reedsville;
  • Sara Ebel, sophomore, Appleton;
  • Amanda Glasheen, freshman, Kaukauna;
  • Meredith Imler, freshman, Nehlsville;
  • Paula Kaminechi, freshman, Freedom;
  • Katrina Kloehn, sophomore, Appleton
  • Jennifer Lehl, freshman, New London;
  • Teresa McLaughlin, sophomore, Appleton.

ESPN is expected to cover the dance team competitions, with broadcast times to be announced.

Posted 12/20/2000