As head coach of Bonners Ferry High School’s dance team, Lisa Dirks could not be more proud of her squad.
“The team works hard all year round gaining strength, flexibility, confidence and, of course, dancing,” said Coach Dirks, who has been coaching dance at the school for five years. “In a couple of the routines, all of the girls do their splits!”
This year’s dance team is comprised of nine young women: Lindsey Christopherson, a senior and team captain; Adrianne Brown, a junior; sophomores Lily Blackmore, Alisa Hannaman, Rilynn Henslee, Bridget Olson and Avery Pluid; and freshmen Melanie Campbell and Reagan Fairchild.
For such a young team, their dedication and hard work has already netted them great success. They received first place at the district competition in all competing categories, which earned them a trip to state on March 15 where they competed at the Idaho Ford Center in Nampa with their military, kick, dance and hip-hop routines.
“The girls did great representing Bonners Ferry to the best of their ability, leaving everything they could on the court,” said Coach Dirks of the March 15 competition. “The day was long and the competition killer, but we took seventh overall out of the 10 3-A teams that qualified. After being at the Idaho Ford Center from 7:30am to 9pm and performing our military, hip-hop, kick and dance routines, we left exhausted and proud! I am thankful for an awesome season with these nine lovely ladies and their supportive parents!”
In addition to their rigorous practice schedule, which starts in mid-August and lasts nine months, the dance team performs at every varsity football home game, and the squad is divided for both boys’ and girls’ varsity basketball games. “We perform at as many games as we can,” said Dirks. “We also perform at evening home wrestling matches.” The squad performs at the Dig Pink Volleyball game as well and attends a camp each July.
Being a coach to this group of young women is something Coach Dirks finds very rewarding. “I love working with the girls, seeing them grow and improve. We are truly a family by the end of the season,” she said.
Try outs are tentatively scheduled for the third week in May. And while they do have some informal practices during the summer, once school starts, they have early morning practice from 5:45 to 7:10am Tuesday through Friday.