The Minnewaska Area Jazz dance team placed 10th at the State Class A Jazz dance competition, Friday at the Target Center in Minneapolis.

The Lakers earned a return trip to state this winter after placing second at the Section 4A Dance Tournament at Wadena-DC, Saturday, Feb. 4.

Competing against 11 other Class A teams, the Lakers placed 10th during the State Jazz prelims, Friday afternoon, failing to earn a berth in the six-team finals later that night.

St. Cloud Cathedral won the state preliminary competition with 5 points, followed by LQP Valley/Dawson-Boyd (10.5), Yellow Medicine East (14), Zumbrota-Mazeppa (19), Crosby-Ironton (26.5), Cannon Falls (33.5), Lake City (35.5), Montevideo (37.5), Holdingford (38), Minnewaska Area (49.5), Hawley (50.5) and New London-Spicer (55).

SCC had the top ranking from all eight judges except for one who ranked LQP first.

The top six schools advanced to the finals, Friday night, where SCC earned the Class A title with six points, followed by LQP-DB (9), YME (13), Zumbrota-Mazeppa (17), Crosby-Ironton (27) and Cannon Falls (27).

In the championship, SCC earned the top ranking from five of the eight judges and also was ranked second, third and fourth.  LQP had two of the other top rankings while YME was ranked first by one judge.

Orono was the state champion in Class AA and Maple Grove earned the Class AAA state jazz title.

•  Earning a berth in Saturday’s State Class A High-Kick finals were LQP-DB, Holdingford, Crosby-Ironton, YME, Zumbrota-Mazeppa and St. Cloud Cathedral.

•  Last year, the Minnewaska Jazz team placed first and the High Kick team was third at sections to earn state berths.  At state, the Jazz team was seventh and the High Kick team was 10th.

•  Crosby-Ironton won the Jazz and High Kick categories at the Section 4A Meet this winter.  Crosby-Ironton won the Section 4A Jazz category with five points, while Minnewaska Area was second with 14, followed by Hawley (15), Frazee (15), DGF (25), Crookston (31.5), Bagley (34.5), Aitkin (37), WDC (43) and Mahnomen 50).

In the High Kick category, Crosby won the title with five points again, followed by Hawley (12), Bagley (14), Minnewaska (18), Frazee (24), Crookston (31), Aitkin (32), DGF (41), WDC (42) and Mahnomen (50).  One of the judges ranked Minnewaska Area sixth and Bagley third.  That was just enough to knock the Lakers from third to fourth.

The top three teams from among the 10 Section 4A teams earned state berths in each discipline.

•  Tana Ziesmer is the coach of the Minnewaska Area dance teams and among her assistants are Mollee Duffeld and Morgan Blair.  Members of the state-qualifying Jazz team are Anna Uecker, Cacee Danielson, Olivia Edmunds, Averie Uhde, Autumm Hess, Mckenna Uhde, Lexi Jenson, Kia Matt, Alannah Christenson and team manager Jada Chakua.

Check out more photos in our photo gallery!