Dance Elite ready for weekend competition

The TCU Elite Dance Team is preparing to defend its back-to-back titles at the American Dance and Drill Team Competition on Saturday.

The team is working harder than ever to stay at the top, senior dancer Courtney Flores said.

“We don’t want to go down,” Flores said. “We just want to keep coming back stronger and stronger each year.”

The team stressed working out individually over break to stay in shape, Flores said, and used email and Facebook to motivate each other to stay active.

Head coach Megan McDonald said having the week before competition off was scary especially since the team is the two-time defending champion.

“There definitely is pressure on the girls. This is probably the most demanding year we’ve ever had,” McDonald said. “We’re doing two dances, jazz and hip hop, and they’re both physically exhausting.”

The team has also focused on being healthy in every way possible, and McDonald said stretching is a key part of staying prepared for competition.

“We’ve had some sprained ankles and tendonitis in the foot and things like that come up in the last couple weeks, which is scary,” McDonald said. "So really just taking care of yourself, exercising, going over the dances, practicing on your own and stretching.”

After spring break, the team will rehearse every day for two to three hours, McDonald said.

This is the team’s fourth year in existence and the fourth year competing at ADTS. The team took second place its first year at the competition.

The Frogs have also placed in the top-15 at the National Dance Alliance competition in Daytona, Fla., the past three years.

McDonald started the team in 2009 after sitting out a year of dance due to injury.

“I expected it to be a success but not quite where it is today,” McDonald said. “It’s surreal.”

This story was updated on Monday, March 18, 2013 at 5:06 p.m.