McALESTER — With six seniors set to graduate from McAlester’s pom squad in May, the Lady Buffaloes knew they’d have low numbers for the 2014-15 school year.
Seven underclassmen tried out for the new squad Friday at Bob Brumley Gymnasium, and all seven made it.
“Really, the girls, I thought they did well,” Lady Buffs coach Yvonne Allford said.
The Lady Buffs’ seven pom dancers next year will be:
• Kelby Koonce, current McAlester sophomore
• Amber Lenington, sophomore
• Bethanie Gray, freshman
• Lainey Lordahl, freshman
• Camryn Powers, freshman
• Carson Quinton, freshman
• Cory Rubertus, eight-grade student
Powers, Lordahl, Koonce and Lenington were all on the 2013-14 team that finished fourth at State. The Lady Buffs competed in two categories but at Nationals but didn’t advance past the first round in either.
Dancers tried out in groups of two or three. The tryout consisted of six individual techniques, a kick line performed together by each group and then individual dance routines.
Each dancer first had to demonstrate that she could maintain an upright position while performing a split, twisting her upper body 90 degrees toward her right foot, then towards her left. Dancers next performed a double toe touch, twice jumping from a standing position and trying to swing their feet up towards their fists, which were fully extended out from their sides.
A “leap in second” jump had them again trying to get their legs up to their outstretched fists, but this jump began with a run. Dancers then performed two standing spins, called pirouettes and fouettes, sandwiched around a turning disc, which involved jumping into the air, then as they landed spinning into a seated position.
Dancers received up to 10 points per move, as they did for the kick line. Allford said the Lady Buffs use a fairly standard set of moves to test their dancers’ basic dance ability.