LAS CRUCES, NM – The New Mexico State University (NMSU) DanceSport Company started off 2015 with a bang at the country’s largest all amateur dance competition, the prestigious Manhattan Amateur Classic (MAC), held January 16-18 in Secaucus, NJ. NMSU’s official team of 17 ballroom, Latin and swing partner dancers performed extremely well, earning five 1st place awards, six 2nd place awards, two 3rd place awards, and seven event Finalists. Overall, team members qualified in 27 competitive events for the 2015 National DanceSport Championships, marking the first time in Company history that every single member earned a bid for Nationals.
Placing first at the MAC were: Brandon Romero & Jade Augustain (Silver Smooth, Gold Smooth, and Gold Rhythm); Robert Peña & Morgan Metcalf (Bronze Rhythm), and; Brandon Romero & Valeria Zerecero (Bronze Latin).
Placing second at the MAC were: Aaron Prescott & Natalie Cardenas (Gold Smooth); Zachary Pohl & Jade Augustain (Bronze Latin and Silver Rhythm); Brandon Romero & Ariel Freilich (Silver Latin), and; Irvin Zavala Verdugo & Valeria Zerecero (Pre-Bronze Rhythm and Bronze Rhythm).
Placing third at the MAC were: Damon Harrison & Valeria Zerecero (Pre-Bronze Smooth), and; Zachary Pohl & Natalie Cardenas (8th Gold Rhythm).
Finalists at the MAC were: Irvin Zavala Verdugo & Ruby Marquez (4th Pre-Bronze Smooth); Walker Fleming & Cydnee Plant (5th Newcomer Foxtrot); Irvin Zavala Verdugo & Morgan Metcalf (4th Bronze Smooth); Walker Fleming & Katrina Armstrong (6th Bronze Smooth); Robert Peña & Ariel Freilich (4th Bronze Latin); Zachary Pohl & Morgan Metcalf (4th Bronze Standard); Damon Harrison & Katrina Armstrong (4th Pre-Bronze Rhythm).
Other national qualifiers at the MAC were: William Bohaty & Diana Sauls (Bronze Smooth); Robert Peña & Cydnee Plant (Bronze Smooth); Aaron Prescott & Natalie Cardenas (Novice Smooth); Zachary Pohl & Ariel Freilich (Pre-Championship Smooth); Irvin Zavala Verdugo & Natalie Cardenas (Bronze Latin); Damon Harrison & Cydnee Plant (Bronze Rhythm), and; Walker Fleming & Ruby Marquez (Bronze Rhythm).
“Our competitive success at the Manhattan Amateur Classic builds on the momentum gained at the USA Dance National Collegiate DanceSport Championships last fall. I am so proud that our entire team has qualified for Nationals this year,” said Hannah Cole, NMSU DanceSport Company coach and dance assistant professor. “Going to competitions like the MAC are essential to fulfill our mission to develop highly-trained collegiate DanceSport athletes and aspiring DanceSport professionals.”
With the help of financial support from last year’s Look Who’s Dancing! fundraiser, the NMSU DanceSport Company will finish its competitive season at the USA Dance National DanceSport Championships held in Baltimore, MD in March, 2015.
About NMSU DanceSport Company
NMSU DanceSport Company is an athletic and performance competitive ballroom, Latin and swing dance company in the NMSU Department of Kinesiology and Dance. The company’s mission to develop highly trained collegiate DanceSport athletes and globally competitive DanceSport alumni; to foster a thriving local and regional dance community, and;
to build and maintain a worldwide center of excellence in partner dance training and teacher education. The ensemble group of dance majors and minors exists to promote DanceSport as a healthy lifestyle alternative in the community and the world through performance, competition and community service.
For more information on the NMSU DanceSport Company’s biggest annual performance and fundraiser, Look Who’s Dancing, visit: www.lookwhosdancing.com or call us at 575-646-5704.
Find us and like us on Facebook.com at /NMSUDanceSport or /LookWhosDancing.
Hannah Cole, Director
575-646-5704 (office) 415-377-7711 (mobile)