Endicott College students, faculty, and family members gathered to celebrate the Endicott dance program’s national championship victory on Wednesday afternoon.
Beginning at noon, the event was held at Gully’s. The newly-renovated space on campus was full of spectators, all appreciating the second club title in Endicott history.
The celebration began with a video of the competition, in which the group’s awe-inspiring Open Pom performance was enough to earn them the title. The audience, including President Steven DiSalvo, was in admiration of the group’s teamwork.
“It’s very exciting… We’re very, very proud of you. Congratulations.” said DiSalvo.
The competition took place in Florida at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The Blue and Green bested eight other schools, and delivered when the stakes were at their highest.
“The whole atmosphere of UDA Nationals, you can’t explain it. When we’re there, we just have a focused mindset unlike any other,” said junior Alexa Brown. “How much we push ourselves everyday we’re there is amazing.”
Last season, the group placed fifth in Open Pom. Despite a successful season, it wasn’t the finish they wanted. However, this year’s team would respond with domination, not desperation.
“I think we all knew what we wanted and we were hungry to do better than we did,” said junior Jenna Brown. “It really gave us that fire.”
As the head coach of the group for the past 12 seasons, Nicole Sao Pedro-Welch has been a part of many championship runs. That being said, she described this season’s as “surreal”, and cherishes the support on campus.
“It can’t happen without the support of faculty and staff, the president, and the student-athletes because that’s what helps us get through the hard days,” said Sao Pedro-Welch. “That just made the victory that much sweeter.”
Next on the schedule for the team is the UDA New England Regional next month, where the Gulls will aim for their 10th straight victory in the competition.