Golden Girls place well in Championships

Thursday, March 22, 2012 | 8:18 p.m. CDT; updated 9:43 p.m. CDT, Thursday, March 22, 2012

COLUMBIA — Missouri's Golden Girls competition team finished high in multiple categories in the USA Collegiate Cheerleading and Dance Championships.

The championships were held Sunday and Monday in Anaheim, Calif.

Watch the performance

Golden Girls fans who weren't able to watch the team in California can see a video of the competition routine, along with performances from other groups, at

The team took second place in the hip-hop division. The group also took fourth in the open dance division with a jazz routine choreographed by Julie Yoakum, a Golden Girl alumna. Their combined overall ranking was the highest of all the schools in the competition.

The Golden Girls haven't done this well at a competition in a long time, Golden Girl Kayla Biek said.

Kayla Melton, another team member, said "This year I think we had the mindset that we were in it to win it."

The Golden Girls' new Tiger Performance Complex, which they share with the gymnastics teams, opened in October 2011, allowing the dancers to hold longer practices. Melton said the extra time at the practice center helped the team succeed.

"We've had so much publicity with the new building being built that we wanted to show that we'd earned it," Melton said.

Biek described the team this year as a great group of girls driven to put 100 percent in at every practice.

"It was great to be a part of a team that really helped put us back on the map in the competition circuit," she said.

The Golden Girls competed against some of the best teams on the West Coast, Biek said. "To be able to be right up there score-wise with those teams is amazing."

Melton said the Golden Girls wouldn't usually be seen as a group of hip-hop dancers.

"I think we proved to everybody that we do other things besides what we do at games, and when we put our mind to something we can really succeed," she said. 

Washington State's dance team beat Missouri by a mere point in the hip-hop division, according to the MU athletics website.

"We just can't wait to see what next year will bring," Biek said.

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