A step above the rest

Drill team officers announced for the 2015-2016 squad


Photo by Savannah Pritchard

file photo

Story by Abby Hill and Lauren Potter

Now that the new drill team has been selected, director Kristi Robinson is looking forward to its continued success.

“The Texas HighSteppers have always been a successful drill team,” Kristi Robinson said. “We have a great group of young ladies joining the 2015-2016 HighSteppers, and I look forward to our team growing and continuing this tradition of success.”

Tryouts, which took place April 17 in Tiger Center, resulted in a 25-member team. The tryout dance was more complex than past years but more comparable to the skill level used in dances throughout the year.

“We stepped up the choreography a bit to make it a little more competitive,” sophomore Natalie Robinson said. “It required the new incoming members to go home and practice, but we allowed them to video the dance so they could review.”

Along with new members, three officers were selected to lead the team next fall.

“In the officer tryout selection process, whoever has the highest score earns the top leadership role on the team,” Kristi Robinson said. “All three ladies will continue the tradition of leading one of the best drill teams in the state.”

The new officers are sophomore Natalie Robinson, captain; junior Sarah Hickerson, senior lieutenant; and sophomore Leighton Weber, junior lieutenant. They will begin their officer training during the summer and learn various dances. The girls will begin to lead the team as they approach the school year.

“I was really excited and proud that my hard work paid off,” Weber said. “I’ve been preparing for tryouts for a really long time.”

The last time a junior served as captain was in 2001, and Kristi Robinson is confident that the team will adapt to having three instead of five officers.

“They proved they are knowledgeable about all aspects of drill team, and they will be able to divide their roles sufficiently to lead the team to the best of their abilities,” Kristi Robinson said. “With great team members who are comfortable with taking on leadership roles and helping each other in every situation, it is very easy to have just a few officers to lead the team.”

Natalie Robinson already has some goals for the new team.

“I hope to further the team’s dance technique,” Natalie Robinson said, “and keep everything drill team related exciting and positive.”

Hickerson, who served as junior lieutenant this year, said she hopes the team will focus on its technical abilities.

“I hope that we will be able to improve the team’s technical skills and have a better overall team,” Hickerson said. “I hope to work year round to improve both our Friday night performances and competition results.”

The officers and new team look forward to a successful year starting with their first performance with the new girls, “Hooray for Hollywood,” during Spring Show on Friday and Saturday in the John Thomas Theatre. Tickets are $5.

“Everyone on our Texas HighSteppers team believes in each other and wants to do what is best for helping the team be successful,” Kristi Robinson said.