Warriors Athlete of Week: Geraets a key cog for Brainerd’s dance team
Quinn Gereats and the Brainerd dance team opened the 2021-22 season with a first-place showing in kick at Pequot Lakes.
Unlike many of her teammates and competitors, Quinn Geraets was late to the dance.
The dance scene that is. The Brainerd Warriors senior didn’t start dance until she was in fourth grade after a neighbor inspired her to join. Three years later she was dancing varsity jazz. Five years after that she’s a captain and key contributor to both the Warriors kick and jazz teams.
Geraets and the Warriors are coming off big showings at last year’s Class 3A state dance meet where the jazz team finished seventh and the kick landed a third-place showing.
“Our past seasons have been pretty successful so we just want to match or do better than our past seasons,” Geraets said. “I think there is definitely more pressure on the team this year just because of the amazing teams that joined our section. I think that we are just trying to do our best and focusing on ourselves rather than worrying about other teams because we can’t control them.
“We’re working on doing our best so we’re working very hard to make ourselves the best that we can be.”
Geraets already sports an impressive resume. She’s been a part of three straight Brainerd teams that won the Section 4-3A title in both jazz and kick. She was named team MVP as a freshman, sophomore and last year was co-MVP with India Hiltner. She’s won best turns every year since she’s been on the team. She was All-Central Lakes Conference jazz the last five years and all-conference kick the past four seasons.
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At Just For Kix Camp, she was selected as Most Outstanding Dancer three years in a row. She was the National Solo Champion at Just For Kix in 2019. Geraets, Jada Bentson and India Hiltner were the National JFK Trio Champions in 2021. The trio recently placed second in Miss Dance Team Minnesota.
"Dance is my everything. I have the best team by my side. We spend more time with each other than our own families. It just means the most to me.”"
— Quinn Geraets
“About 25 years ago we were asked to do Athlete of The Week,” Brainerd head coach Cindy Clough said. “I shied away from doing it. Do I think our kids are athletes and deserving? Yes. What is difficult is we do not have a scoreboard where we can individually see who puts up points so I always shied away as we are such a team sport.
“Our entire team works hard. Our kids have two- and three-a-day practices when you count their studio classes and ballet. I feel Quinn serves as a great representative of what our team stands for.”
Geraets is excited about the season and the two routines Brainerd will perform this season. She called both the most favorite of her six varsity seasons.
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“Our kick routine is called “Bathing Beauties” and we have a little costume change in it where we flip down our costumes to show colors and stuff,” Geraets said. “This dance is really cool. I think that our coaches have done a lot to make this dance the best it can be with formations. I think the formations are the best that we’ve ever had. I think it’s a really cool dance and it’s super fun.
“For jazz, we have a dance called “Stupid” and it’s very contemporary. It’s probably one of my favorite dances that we’ve done ever. I think everybody on the team loves doing it, too, and it makes it that much better.”
Geraets admitted to liking jazz more than kick. She said she enjoys turns and there are a lot more turns in jazz than in kick
Brainerd opened the season with a first-place showing at the Pequot Lakes Invite Friday, Nov. 19. They performed a showcase Saturday, Nov. 20, but no scores were announced. Brainerd opens the conference schedule Friday, Dec. 3, in St. Cloud.
Clough said Geraets is physically strong and said she’s a machine when it comes to practice.
“The stronger you are the better you can turn, as well as execute numerous other skills,” Clough said. “You just have more control and stability. She is consistent and can be counted on. Her attitude is very upbeat and she tries to keep others up. She pushes and cheers for her teammates.
"I feel her strength is that she is a gamer. She is very competitive. She loves to win and has a bring-it-on attitude. I remember when she was very young competing at her first state, I asked her if she was nervous and she said, ‘Not really.’ I feel in her mind, she visualizes she is competing every day at practice so when she gets there, she is prepared. Some kids don't push hard every time so when they get to an event it is harder for them. Quinn is prepared.”
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And she’s not alone. Geraets has been teamed with fellow seniors Thea Shogren, Greta Schloemer, Bentson and Hiltner all six varsity seasons. The group has become a cohesive leadership group for Brainerd.
“We are all best friends,” Geraets said. “We have been best friends since seventh grade for sure. I feel like we work very well together. We get choreography done and lead the team as best as we can during our senior year. We’re the strongest we’ve been together during our senior year so that’s great.”
Along with dance, Geraets is also performing in the classroom. She owns a 4.0 grade-point average and has been Academic All-State each season. She’s also a class cabinet member, a middle school religious education volunteer as well as a dance instructor.
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“Dance is my everything,” she said. “I have the best team by my side. We spend more time with each other than our own families. It just means the most to me. It’s been my life forever. I can’t even explain how much it means to me.”
JEREMY MILLSOP may be reached at 855-5856 or email@example.com. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jeremymillsop.
Other notable performances
Breya Sawyer, girls hockey, collected 15 saves in a 2-1 victory over Sartell-Sauk Rapids.
Molly Pohlkamp, girls hockey, scored the game-winning goal against Sartell-Sauk Rapids.
Sport: Dance team
Career highlight: Getting third in last year’s Class 3A State kick competition
Grade-point average: 4.0
Favorite class: Math
Favorite food: Tacos
Favorite website or app: Instagram
Favorite restaurant: Crave American Kitchen and Sushi Bar
Future plans: Plans to attend college and dance, but unsure where
Parents: Roger and Tracy Geraets