Starsteppers bring energy to American All-Star State Championship

Published 12:45 am Wednesday, January 19, 2022

LAPLACE — As St. John Parish continues to rebound from Hurricane Ida, St. Charles Catholic’s Starsteppers dance team decided to forgo nationals this year and instead drive all efforts into shining bright at state.

The Starsteppers dazzled judges with their Pom, Jazz, Kick and Game Day routines during the American All-Star Louisiana State Dance/Drill Team Championship held January 16 at the Cajun Dome in Lafayette.

St. Charles Catholic took third in Division Two with their Kick routine and placed fourth overall in Kick among competitors from all divisions across the state. The Starsteppers also placed second for outstanding performances in Division Two Pom and Game Day.

“They worked their butts off for this,” said Starsteppers sponsor Sarah Faucheux. “To see it all come together Sunday was the best feeling. I couldn’t be prouder of the team. The girls did amazing.”

Preparing for state involved intense practice during Thanksgiving week, throughout Christmas Break and on several Saturdays. Every routine seemed to click together beautifully during a five-hour practice last Saturday, giving the Starsteppers a much-needed boost of confidence heading into the state championship.

The Starsteppers arrived at the Cajun Dome bright and early Sunday morning, ready to take their spot on the stage. Pom was the first routine of the day and the most nerve-wracking as the girls danced away their nervous jitters.

“They executed it really well and had a lot of energy,” Faucheux said. “I think the biggest thing was that they had fun. It was a 90s mix that pumped everybody up.”

Next up was Kick. With the first routine out of the way, the girls were excited to compete, and they delivered in grand fashion. The sharp lines made the choreography clean and pleasing to the eye.

Although the Starsteppers didn’t place in Jazz, the third routine of the day, Faucheux said the team put forth great effort in an exceptionally competitive category.

“I think that was one of the hardest to compete in. Some schools like St. Amant only competed in Jazz, so you were competing against teams that have perfected a single dance,” Faucheux said. “Our jazz routine was a Led Zeppelin song, and it was one of my favorites that they performed. They executed that really well.”

Game Day was the final performance of the day. It was the routine the Starsteppers were most confident in because it was one of the first dances they learned back in November. The dance was uniform and precise, earning St. Charles Catholic second place in the division.

This year’s team has phenomenal leadership from six seniors: Karen Trichell, Amari Coleman, Jeanne St. Martin, Captain Allison Powell and Co-Captains Chloe Genovese and Lauren Weber.

Faucheux said each of the girls give a special quality to the team. Some are “hype girls” who uplift the team with constant encouragement, while others lead quietly through constructive criticism.

“The senior leadership on this team is unbelievable,” Faucheux said. “I’m sad that I’m losing all six of them next year. Nobody will be able to replace these six girls. They brought so much fun to the team. They make my day every time we practice.”

The girls’ bond makes them more like sisters than teammates, and Faucheux said that camaraderie has been a source of comfort as St. John Parish recovers from Hurricane Ida.

“I think Starsteppers was a constant for them. Even though some of them might have damage to their house, we were still able to pull together. I think they would much rather be together than be apart,” Faucheux said.