WEST LIBERTY, W.Va., Nov. 7, 2017 — The West Liberty University Dance Team is growing.
With eight passionate members and a new coach, the team aims to encourage positive school spirit through performances, community appearances, volunteer activities, and competitions. It has been more active than ever this fall.
“I am looking forward to getting the dance team more involved with performances around campus and hopefully making it a competitive team in the near future,” Coach Courtney Taylor said.
Taylor is a WLU alumna and now a substitute teacher for Ohio County Schools. She also coaches the cheerleading squad and has eight years of competitive dance experience.
The 2017 – 2018 Hilltopper Dance Team include: Megan Apesos, Kiana Crider, Janie Krzys, Angelica McFadden and Peyton Slusser, all freshmen, sophomore Alexis Turner-Davis and two seniors, Meredith Garner and Sam Scarnechia.
Begun in 2006 by alumna Kayla Costlow, the dance team was created by students. It then went through a transition of coaches, eventually leaving the team with no coach at all. Last year, the team was entirely student ran by a council that included a president, vice president and secretary.
Garner was instrumental in keeping the dance team alive last year and she is now the team president.
“It’s really humbling to see the team now with the increase of girls, new uniforms, a new coach and being able to perform at half time. It’s really exciting to see all that hard work get paid off and hopefully in the future we can compete nationally,” she said.
The dance team practices twice a week, and stays involved on campus by performing at sporting events and campus activities such as Relay for Life or Greek Sing. Along with fundraising and community involvement, the team participates in team bonding activities once a month.
“The girls are very nice and we have built a collective friendship that hopefully lasts forever. I look forward to what we will be producing in the future,” said Alexis Turner-Davis, vice president of the team.
The team was able to host several events in the past that include sponsoring a Zumba class, dance workshop, tryout prep clinic and tryouts. The dance team welcomes all students to participate in their events, even if they do not have a strong dance background.
Tryouts are held at the beginning of fall and end of spring semesters. Prior dance experience is required in order to be on the team. Specific dance requirements can be found on the team’s Facebook page.
The dance team plans to fundraise enough money to participate in a NDA (National Dance Association) camp. To proudly represent West Liberty University, the dance team aspires to win a bid and compete nationally in Daytona, Fla.