Pantherettes Finish Undefeated Season With State Runner Up Title

Junior Caroline Brown received awards at the Pantherettes awards ceremony.

Katie Bilka, Reporter

   On Saturday, March 10, the GHS Pantherettes won state runner-ups in AA Pom (score of 78.66) and jazz (score of 70.92) at the annual IHSDTA (Indiana High School Dance Team Association) state competition held at Jefferson High School in Lafayette, Indiana. 

   In the previous months, the girls participated at four competition invitationals in order to qualify for state at Clark, Munster, Lake Central, and Clark/Marian schools. At the end of every invitational, the team would leave with two first place trophies in AA Pom and jazz, making them undefeated throughout the regular season. 

   North Regionals, the team competition before state, was held at Lake Central on March 2. The girls got an 80 in Pom and a 74 in jazz. “‘Two-peat’ for regionals in Jazz, and now Pom, and I couldn’t be any happier!” said dancer senior Lauren Atkinson. 

   During school on March 8, the Pantherettes were released early from GHS at 1pm and headed to the high school escorted by a party bus and Griffith police officers. On Saturday, March 9, the girls got an early start preparing for the day ahead. They performed at 12:11 pm in Pom and at 4:53 pm in jazz. “I’m so sad this was my last time ever performing our Pom dance because we’ve gone so far, and it was the last time dancing with the seniors that I’ve been with since freshman year. However, I’m glad we danced our hearts out on that floor,” said dancer junior Emilia Shapiro. 

   Head coach Katie Ashenbaugh excitedly remarked how proud she was of the girls and all that they accomplished this year. “They’ve shown their peers and the audience what I knew they were capable of all along,” said Ashenbaugh. 

   On the following Tuesday, the girls attended the annual winter sports banquet. Junior Caroline Brown won best mental attitude, senior Dynahstee Moore won most improved, and MVP was awarded to senior Julianne Long.

Senior Dhynastee Moore with her awards after the Pantherettes ceremony.
Senior Julianne Long with her awards after the Pantherettes awards.