The St. Augustine Record, by Kati Bexley, Saturday, March 21, 2009
For Cori Ottenstein, 17, being part of Bartram Trail High School’s dance team on March 8, the day the team won the National Dance Alliance National Championships in Orlando, was one of the best days of her life.
Bartram Trail beat out 400 other schools across the country to win its second consecutive title. The school’s coach, Patty Adams, has spent several years building up the school’s unstoppable reputation across the state. And it’s paying off. Several girls are going on to dance for colleges, and some are auditioning for the Jacksonville Jaguars “The Roar” dancers. (…)
Like Ottenstein, dance team members say the sport has taught them life lessons. Team Captain Brittiany Fonda, 19, and team officer, Kayla Harris, 18, say it’s shown them the hard work and determination it takes to obtain a goal.
Both of the girls are trying out for the Jaguars “The Roar” and are in the final round of auditions. “I will just work really hard this year to improve and try out again next year,” Fonda said. “You can never give up.”
Svedlund said Adams taught them the dance team “isn’t really about dance.” She’s trying out for the dance team at Georgia Tech, where she will attend next year. She said Adams pushes them to bring in an A or B average, and Svedlund is ranked 29th in her class. “She taught us it doesn’t matter at the end of the day whether you win or lose,” she said. “As long as you’ve given your best, you can never let excuses get in your way.”
Adams said even if her team hadn’t taken the national championship, they won her over after their performance.”They came off the stage and said, ‘We can go home right now because we know we did our best. We did everything we could,'” she said. “The lessons of hard work they learned was the real prize for me.”
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