Decatur and Beamer win state dance titles

The Decatur and Todd Beamer dance and drill teams are both state champions. The two schools’ teams won separate categories at the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA) Dance and Drill Team State Championships, which were held March 26-27 inside the Yakima SunDome.

The Decatur drill team outlasted 14 other teams to win the Pom competition. The Beamer dance team easily won the Hip Hop category in Yakima, outlasting 19 other Class 4A teams.

The Decatur Pom team tallied 465 points to finish nine points ahead of Eastlake High School. Lake Washington finished third and Heritage was fourth. The Gators also finished in fourth place in the Military category.

A total of 70 Washington high schools performed 130 dances and drills at the state championships.

The Decatur drill team is a year-round program that supports both the high school’s football and basketball teams.

Their competition season runs from November through March and the team practices five days a week, two hours a day during the school year. They also practice four days a week during the summer.

The Gators were coming off winning first place in both the Military and Pom categories at the West Central District competition, which was held at South Kitsap High School on March 13. Out of 10 competitions this school year, the Gators earned seven first-place trophies in either Pom or Military.

Decatur’s dance and drill coach, Lindsay Starr was also voted the Class 4A Coach of the Year by her fellow coaches throughout the state of Washington. Starr has been coaching at Decatur for the past eight years.

The first-place trophy by Beamer in the Hip Hop category is becoming old hat for the Titans. The school’s Hip Hop dance team has won a total of five state titles in the last seven years.

This year, the Titans dominated the competition in Yakima. Beamer scored a total of 482 points during the state championships, finishing 12 points ahead of second-place Southridge. Kent-Meridian finished third and Pasco was fourth. Thomas Jefferson finished sixth and Federal Way ended up in eighth place in the Hip Hop category.

Beamer also finished up in 10th place in the Dance category. Jefferson ended up fifth in Dance and Federal Way was ninth.

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