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WDC captains getting kick out of job

Photos by Brian Hansel Members of the 2008-09 Wadena-Deer Creek dance team.1 / 3
Captains Cally Johannes, left, Mary McGrane and Michelle Trout choreograph a number for their Wadena-Deer Creek dance team.2 / 3
Wadena-Deer Creek dancers Megan Schmidt, left, Lexie Hoemberg, Sayde Anderson and Rachael Carlisle do some kicking.3 / 3

Beth Motschenbacher might be the head of the Wadena-Deer Creek Rhythmettes Dance team but she will be the first to tell you who is the heart.

The Rhythmettes are currently preparing for their 2008-09 season opener Dec. 13 at Fergus Falls with practices that often last three hours after school.

Choreographing the numbers the team performs are team captains Michelle Trout, Mary McGrane and Cally Johannes. Trout and Johannes are both in their senior year. McGrane is in her junior year and will be joined by new captains next season. The Rhythmettes are following Minnesota State High School League rules in running the team as they do.

The amount of sheer work in setting up competitive routines is enormous but Trout, for one, is not kicking.

"It's just my passion," Trout said. "I can express everything. I can be myself and not feel weird about it."

Johannes is plenty tired by the time the team wraps up practice each evening.

"It's a lot of hard work and it's fun to see what the dance becomes," Johannes said.

McGrane, a former gymnast, likes the team emphasis of the sport.

"You have to count on each other to do well," McGrane said.

There are 22 girls out for the dance team. Joining Trout, McGrane and Johannes this season are Haley Anderson, Sayde Anderson, Kaylie Bauck, Rachael Carlisle, Priska Fatch, Jenna Oeiser, Stephanie Hahn, Heather Haman, Kelsey Hassa, Lexie Hoemberg, Sonja Kern, Molly Kraemer, Caitlyn Kreller, Nev Koeva, Kayla Mayerhover, Ashley Pauly, Cecelia Sakry, Alicia Schmidt and Megan Schmidt.

Motschenbacher may have to take a hands-off approach to the choreography but her captains value her presence.

"She's kind of like our Support God," smiled Trout.