Garden Grove Unified School District’s (GGUSD) Pacifica High School Dance program competed at the 2017 USA Nationals Competition held at the Long Beach Convention Center on March 31 and April 1. They took home the National Championship in the Medium Hip-Hop Division, earning their sixth national title since 2013.
The team, led by junior captain Megan Smith, also placed third in the Extra Small Dance division and second in the Dance and Pom division. Their Hip-Hop routine also earned them the Judges Award of Excellence, which is given to the top three scoring teams of all 21 open divisions, their third Judges Award of Excellence overall.
“These young women put in countless hours of practice outside of their regular school schedule and have yet again reaped the benefits of hard work,” said Teri Rocco, Board of Education trustee. “It is always a pleasure to see our students excel in and out of the classroom.”
Coach Brie Velton, Pacifica alumni Payton Rice, Jessica and Nicole Erickson, Jia Huang, and Rochelle Mapes choreographed the routines and led the twelve members of the dance team as they competed in six divisions against more than 2,000 competitors from more than ten states.
Starting in early August, the team practices three to four days per week for two hours each day and start learning their competition routines in October. Two months before the competition they add a 6 a.m. practice. The dance team also performs at community events, football and basketball games, pep assemblies, and numerous school events.