Dexter Dance Team Shines at National Championships Amidst Adversity


In an extraordinary display of resilience and talent, the Dexter Dance Team soared to new heights at the Universal Dance Association (UDA) National Championships in Orlando, FL, on Saturday, February 3, 2024.

Facing off against over 50 top teams from across the United States, Dexter's dancers competed in the Medium Varsity Jazz, Medium Varsity Pom, and Medium Varsity Game Day categories on the national stage. When the dust had settled, and the scores were tallied, Dexter’s Dance Team took 6th
in the nation for Medium Varsity Game Day. Quite the accomplishment, especially in hearing what they were up against.

The team comprises a dedicated group of athletes—Seniors: Captain Anna Kovarik, Dana Kulas, and Kayla Wiseman. Juniors: Co-Captains Ruby Boynton and Sarah Sawin, Lauren Hart, Jenna Lenkowski, Delaney Bachman, and Ella Nelson. Sophomores: Ainslie Ramsburgh, Ella Jensen, and Ally Ohtenen. Freshman: Cat Maust.

The team embarked on their season in May, with rigorous training camps in July, culminating in mid-February, working year-round to compete nationally. This season has been marked by a series of daunting challenges, from health and injury setbacks to the intensive demands of national competition. However, accepting no excuses whatsoever, the Dexter Dance Team showcased an unwavering spirit of perseverance.

Coach Morgan Dubey reflects on the team’s grit, saying, “It’s been an incredibly tough season with a lot of different challenges thrown our way, many of which seemed impossible to recover from. This team was still able to push through it all and come out stronger. We are very proud of the progress we have been able to make and the product we put out at nationals. It is only up from here.”

Securing 6th place in the nation in the Medium Varsity Game Day Division 2 was no small feat. This achievement is particularly remarkable considering the Dexter team, unlike many of their competitors from public and private schools, who benefit from full district funding, is entirely self-funded. Their success story is a toe-to-toe battle between a teenage David and a Goliath of setbacks coupled with financial limitations. As one parent describes them, this team “remains the little engine that could.”

Photos courtesy of Morgan Dubey

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