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Tigerette dads, breast cancer awareness star at competition

by: Submitted photo, WINNERS - The Tigard High School Tigerettes took second place in the large drill category at the Mt. Hood and Friends dance competition Feb. 17.

The Tigerettes, Tigard High School's dance team, hosted the 23rd annual 'For the Love of Dance' competition Saturday, Feb. 10.

The audience was treated to some great performances, but head coach Linda Sheron reminded the crowd, 'A great cause is the focus of the day.'

The Tigerettes have taken on Breast Cancer Awareness as their theme this year. Their state routine is titled, 'The Cure.'

'This is very personal. Every one of us has been touched by this disease. We have a platform to help make people aware,' said coach David McCall

'Today we raised over $1,000 in the fight against cancer,' said captain Kaity Haworth. 'As we passed the buckets around the audience for donations, it was amazing how everybody could relate.'

'Everybody gave so much and thanked us for what we were doing,' added Captain Hannah Russell.

The most emotional moment of the event came when Byron Silva and his four daughters took the gym floor. Byron talked about his wife Diane's desire to have been a greater part of his daughter Karyn's senior year as a captain of the Tigerettes. Due to cancer, a battle Diane lost in May of last year, she was unable to be active, as she wanted to, and regretted it.

In memory of Diane, the family asked donations be made to the Tigerettes. The Silva family matched the donations and presented that gift to the Tigerettes.

'This will make my wife happy,' Silva said.

'This money will be used to assist those with financial hardships so they too can experience dance team,' said coach Sheron.

'Last year was really hard, but all my Tigerettes helped me get through it,' Karyn Silva said. 'Keep dancing and I can't wait to see you at state.'

The competition featured 14 teams in three divisions. David Douglas won the show division, Pendleton won the large dance division, and Newberg won the small dance division.

One of the highlights of this event is the annual dance by the Tigerettes and their dads. Coaches Laurie Colletta and Stephanie Sheron choreographed the routine to 'Staying Alive' and 'That's the Way I Like It.' The dads learned to do a grapevine, the snake, disco moves, ripples, turns and the crowd's favorite - the kick line.

'The first year dancing gives you the feeling of safety in numbers because freshman dads are in the back row,' said senior dad Peter Russell. 'Each year, as you move closer to the front row, not only does your fear increase, but so does the skill with which your daughter keeps you out of trouble. Seeing my daughter's eyes roll when I mess up and realizing she's happy I'm standing there with her anyway is the best part.'

Russell's daughter, Hannah, added, 'I have to talk my dad through the routine as to what's next. The best part of the dance is watching the audience laugh. We laugh a lot.'

Mark Haworth has been involved with dance team six years with three daughters.

'This is fun because the girls rarely dance with their dad,' Haworth said. 'Dads like me danced a lot when we were younger, but I can see how out of rhythm I am as I get older. I attempt to do the snake and we just laugh about it.'

'Dad just didn't understand the snake,' said his daughter Kaity.

Tigerettes take second at Mt. Hood and Friends

Tigard High School's dance team, The Tigerettes, received a score of 82.2 and second place in the large drill category at the Mt. Hood and Friends dance competition held at Parkrose High School on Saturday. West Albany placed first with a score of 83.0 and Lincoln placed third with 80.7 points.

Kelsey Cline finished in the top five of the advanced drill down competition.

The state lyrical routine is called 'The Cure,' for breast cancer awareness theme the team has picked for state 2007. The routine has three distinct parts. The first section to the song 'Mama' by Beth Hart is for those who have fought. 'A Womans Work' by Kate Bush is the second song, which represents those who are fighting. The final piece is 'I Run' written by Melissa Etheridge specifically for the 'Race for the Cure' initiative. This section is for those who have yet to fight.

'The team's projection and technique was amazing today,' said coach and choreographer Laurie Colletta.

'Today at both rounds they danced as a team. There was static electricity between them when they took the floor,' said coach Dave McCall. 'There was no 'I' when they came off the floor. They were stunning.'

'These girls are competitors and rose to the occasion,' said head Coach Linda Sheron.

The Tigerettes last performance before the state competition will be at Liberty High School on March 3, where they will reveal their third and final piece, 'I Run.'