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Dolores senior joins dance team at college Citrus Bowl

Krystle Hager performs at New Year’s game in Florida

A Dolores High School senior joined dancers from across the country in a performance at the 2018 Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida.

After a series of auditions in summer of 2017, Krystle Hager qualified for the Varsity All-American dance team for the second time. On Monday, she joined hundreds of other student dancers in a performance before the New Year’s Day college football game. Her mother, Deb Hager, coaches the varsity dance team at Dolores High School.

Dancers, cheerleaders, mascots and other students involved in “school spirit” activities can audition for Varsity Spirit teams, like the All-American, that perform at various events around the world every year. Krystle auditioned through a Universal Dance Association camp in Farmington, where her mother said she was one of only four dancers to qualify for the team. Last year, she performed in Houston, but this year Krystle said she chose the Citrus Bowl because she wanted to see Disney World while she was there.

She and her mother stayed at a Disney resort before the game, along with other Varsity team members. They performed during the pregame show before the game, which was played between the Notre Dame Fighting Irish and the Louisiana State University Tigers at Camping World Stadium in Orlando.

The team was invited to watch the game for free after their performance, but Krystle said most of them left at half-time.

“It was raining and really cold,” she said.

Although her first trip to Florida came during unusually cold weather, Krystle said she still had fun, and it was “a really good experience.” Even dancing in a stadium that seats thousands, she said she never felt nervous.

“I don’t get nervous when I perform,” she said.

Krystle has danced with the Dolores High School team since her freshman year, and she said she plans to continue pursuing dance in college.

Deb Hager said Krystle’s opportunity came as the result of hard work and several months of fundraising, as dancers must help pay their way to Varsity performances. She said she was glad her daughter was able to participate two years in a row, and she hopes some of her other students will qualify for the team in the future.

“Varsity All-American is a heck of a team,” she said.

Dolores dance teams have performed at several sporting events in the past, including a Denver Nuggets game at the Pepsi Center in 2017.

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