Philomath High School senior Ella Kelley was one of only four dancers statewide to earn a spot on the Dance Drill Coaches Association of Oregon’s 4A-1A all-state team.
Meanwhile, the Shining Stars took first place in a competition on Saturday at Thurston. The team will now prepare for the Oregon School Activities Association state competition on March 18 at Oregon City.
Joining Kelley as all-staters from 4A were Jocelyn Christison of Stayton, Olivia Gustafson of Gladstone and Sam Lockamy of Banks.
In other classifications, all-state dance team selections included 22 in 6A and eight in 5A.
To be eligible for all-state, each dancer must be recommended by their coach as meeting core dance skills, be in good standing with their school and all members of the dancer’s coaching staff must be a member of the DDCA, which has sponsored the all-state team since 2011. Only seniors are eligible to audition.
All-state auditions took place on Jan. 16 at Gresham High School.
Philomath took first place at the Thurston competition with an “excellent” rating, beating out runner-up Marshfield and third-place Woodburn. The Shining Stars have now won two competitions this season, the other coming at Sheldon. The team has finished second at the Philomath, Canby and Sprague competitions.