Drill team attends Mustang Classic

gchs drill team
The Devilettes perform in the Moab Dance Company’s presentation of “Halloween Dreamscapes” earlier this fall. Photo by Anthony Militano

The Grand County High School drill team earned the respect of their coach when members attended the Mustang Classic, on Saturday, December 7, at Herriman High School.

The Devilettes overcame adversity to place third in Character, fourth in Military and fifth in Dance.

“The girls have fought through injuries and illness to prepare for this competition. They dug deep and danced so well this weekend,” head coach Heather Dowd said in a text message to The Times-Independent.

There is a widespread misperception that the drill team is simply entertainment; dancers who wear sparkly, brightly colored costumes and put on a show during halftime at sporting events. Drill is a sport and the Devilettes treat it as such.

According to USHAA guidelines, drill is an exclusive female sport. The drill season is relatively short, compared to other winter sports. The Devilettes are scheduled for three competitive meets, one regional meet and then the state finals.

And while the season is short, the reality is the Devilettes often participate in exhibition performances at halftime shows and special events all year long to maintain physical stamina, hone skills and perfect routines.

The Devilettes perform a halftime routine at a girls basketball game in early December. Photo by Anthony Militano

The Devilettes have been practicing since late June. “Our girls practice a minimum of five days a week for two hours each day,” Dowd said. All season, the team has been “… doing two-a-days to improve their strength and flexibility.”

“Our full team is performing in all routines this year. No cuts were made. Typically, we have tryouts for each style of dance we are performing and often the girls will not make it into the routine. They seriously have worked so hard,” Dowd said.

Dowd was pleased with the way the team performed at the Mustang Classic, saying, “… we hope to use this momentum to push us to greater heights.”

The Devilettes are scheduled attend the Salt Lake Valley Classic competition at Juan Diego High School, on Saturday, Dec. 14.