Dance Team: Brainerd prepped for postseason push

The Brainerd Warriors dance team will compete in the Central Lakes Conference Championship Saturday, Feb. 20.

The Brainerd Warriors varsity kick team performs Saturday, Jan. 16, at Brainerd High School. Kelly Humphrey / Brainerd Dispatch

Despite COVID-19 drastically changing the prep sports landscape, Brainerd Warrior head coach Cindy Clough still called this season a fun one.

But then winning is always fun and the Warriors have done their share of it this season.

Brainerd is coming off a sweep of the Anoka Invite Feb. 13. They captured both kick and jazz with three rank points for each division. Those two wins put Brainerd’s win total to five first-place finishes for the season.

LAST RESULTS: Dance Team: Warriors sweep in Anoka
The final Central Lakes Conference event will be Saturday, Feb. 20 at Sauk Rapids. Brainerd is currently second in both kick and jazz.

“Our athletes are working hard to make up for the lost time,” Clough said. “Since we are in and out of the schools quickly there have been many meet layout changes. We have started having a practice before we go to run through our formations, work on new choreography changes, and prep for the competition. We are liking this better than the five-minute mark time we typically get at a competition and it makes the day way shorter. It is much more relaxed.


“We are getting used to listening to awards over Zoom or over our car speakers. The days are much shorter. The hard part is not seeing your competitors, but we watch them on video following. We are all about making it work and our athletes are adapting well.

“Our parents have been great about driving, allowing our athletes to ride and relax without masks.”

Cindy Clough

The conference championship will be the final event for Brainerd’s junior varsity team. The Warriors have won every competition they’ve entered this season.

“They did not get to go up against Sartell at the last CLC as Sartell’s junior varsity was quarantined so they are excited to see them in action,” Clough said. “Terri Ebinger has done a great job bringing our JV kick to the top and Julie Davidge has worked with JV jazz with help from Ali Geraets and me. We have been short a jazz coach this year so Julie was gracious enough to take the lead. Next year we are hoping to add a third jazz B-team, so we can offer three levels of jazz.”

For the conference championship, there will be livestreaming. The only sound will be the announcer and the music being played. There is a separate stream for each heat, it will show up on Brainerd’s YouTube page starting five minutes prior to the start time.

The livestream site will also be on the CLC website at .


Brainerd will be in Heat 3 with Sartell and Bemidji. The kick competition will begin at 1 p.m. starting with Sartell’s junior varsity. Brainerd junior varsity will perform at 1:05 p.m. and the varsity at 1:20 p.m.

The jazz competition will begin at 1:40. Brainerd’s junior varsity jazz will perform at 1:45 p.m. with the varsity competing at 2 p.m.

Following the conference championship, Brainerd’s next competition will be sections Friday, Feb. 26 in Forest Lake.

The Brainerd Warriors varsity kick team performs Saturday, Jan. 16, at Brainerd High School. Kelly Humphrey / Brainerd Dispatch

“There are no details yet,” Clough said. “There is talk of seeding teams from worst to best from scores from the season. That would be the first time that has ever been done. The positive rationale is that it puts teams the judges need to closely compare next to one another and gives teams the advantage to dance last or in the last heat. Some coaches are feeling the negative side is that it could create preconceived bias by showing judges where teams have scored all year.”

The state dance competition is scheduled for March 12-13 at Edina High School. It will be finals only.


JEREMY MILLSOP may be reached at 218-855-5856 or Follow on Twitter at

Covering the Brainerd lakes area sports scene for the past 23 years.
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