SAN ANGELO, Texas — The Angelo State Angelettes dance team brought home a national championship title after getting first place in the Collegiate Division II Hip Hop category.
The team competed at the American Dance/Drill Team 2023 Collegiate Nationals at the University of North Texas, representing Angelo State for the first time since 2019.
“To me, that just proves that we deserve to be here,” said sophomore Angelette, Edina Darnell. “We deserve to be seen and we’re not going anywhere anytime soon now that we’ve set a bar and our goal is to only grow from there, so Go Rams!”
Growing from just a four-member squad attending nationals as spectators last year to now a 12-member squad bringing home a national championship title, the Angelettes give their success to eachother and how they came together as one.
“Learning to love each other and work together as a unit rather than 12 individuals, that, and learning how to do all of those things together was really a game changer in getting us to those awards that we received,” said junior Angelette, Kaylen Shetler.
The Angelettes are most known for all of their hard work and performances during football and basketball games, but Nationals gives them the opportunity to showcase their team as a whole and their talent in different dance categories like Hip Hop and Jazz.
“Gameday, I think we are more centered on like the crowd, like you know, getting the crowd going,” said senior Angelette, Kena Bolding. “And then for Nationals, it’s an opportunity that we really have to focus on ourselves and showcase what we can do as a team.”
This year, the team competed in two different categories, Hip Hop and Jazz. The Angelettes finished as the second runner-up in the Collegiate D-II Jazz competition, and in the Collegiate D-II Overall, but Hip Hop is where this team shined brightest on competition day, bringing home a national championship.
On top of all of the awards the Angelettes brought home, they also posted their highest scores in team history at the 2023 Collegiate Nationals, but it wasn’t something that came easy. The Angelettes have been working on these routines since they learned them back in August.
“We were looking at it right up until that day before we left, and we learned that routine in August,” said Shetler. “So that was something that has been our focus the entire year. It was our job to make sure that we were giving everybody the same amount of time to be able to put in the work to that dance, and really become comfortable with it and also have fun with it.”