Getting their kicks

New coaches help advance the Zumbrota-Mazeppa dance team story.

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Getting their kicks

Shannon Fitzgibbons

Shannon Fitzgibbons

Shannon Fitzgibbons

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The season of gymnasiums filled with exuberant fans as they watch the rhythmic routines is rapidly approaching. That’s right, dance team season begins at the end of October and there will be some changes this season. The Zumbrota Mazeppa Dance Team has welcomed new leadership this year. Their former head coach, Khendra Johnson, has moved out of state and two new coaches have stepped up to be co-head coaches. The former Junior Varsity coach, Ashley Buchholz, has also resigned and longstanding assistant coach Pam Keller will be taking over the Junior Varsity team.  Brenna Hoven, a gym teacher at Pine Island, and Kristi Roth, a first-grade teacher at Zumbrota Mazeppa, will begin coaching the team when the season begins at the end of October. The Zumbrota-Mazeppa dance team has gone to state 13 consecutive years. They received third place at state in jazz in 2013 and 2018. Last year they earned second at state in jazz for the first time in ZMDT history. The team also earned HVL conference champions in jazz  the past two seasons. ZMDT has made many strides the last few seasons and the new coaches hope to build upon that success.

Leadership can make or break a team so luckily for these girls, the new coaches seem to bring a lot to the table.  Kristi Roth danced for Plainview Elgin Millville throughout high school and Southeast Minnesota State University in college. She was the captain of both teams she danced on. One of many goals she has for her first year of coaching is to “get to know each dancer personally, along with their strengths and weaknesses in dance”. Kristi has clear goals for the season and immense aspirations for the team’s future. She has been involved in dance for a long time and is taking this opportunity as a coach to continue her love for dance. When asked what she would say to those considering joining dance team she said “I think everyone who is considering trying out for the dance team, should. Dance is a great sport where you make so many memories at practices, competitions, team bonding, and much more.  You make new friends, and you create a passion for something you can do for the rest of your life”.

…you create a passion for something you can do for the rest of your life”

— Kristi Roth

Brenna Hoven was a member of ZMDT and danced for Winona State University as well as being their captain her senior year. Some of her goals for the team this season are to help build a team that is cohesive, become a positive role model for the girls and hopefully, if all goes well, to win a state title. Her senior year was the first time that the dance team placed at state. Dance has had a big impact on her life, and she hopes to continue to share her love for dance through her new role as a coach.  When asked if there was anything she could share about dance team that most people are unaware of she said “Something that is really cool about ZMDT is the dancers have full creative control with minimal help from coaches. The dancers are responsible for choosing music, choosing costumes, and choreographing their dances”. Brenna is excited to be on the other side as a coach and to gain a new perspective into the world of dance.

Zumbrota-Mazeppa has had a dance team for almost two decades now and the team has a compelling history. The Zumbrota-Mazeppa dance team has gone to state 13 consecutive years. They received third place at state in jazz in 2013 and 2018. Last year they earned second at state in jazz for the first time in ZMDT history. The team also earned HVL conference champions in jazz  the past two seasons. ZMDT has made many strides the last few seasons and the new coaches hope to build upon that success. The positive presence that these coaches emanate could just be what the girls needed to bring them to the next level.