By Taylor Haggerty
Central’s winterguard teams made the trip to Indiana for this season’s Winterguard International (WGI) Regional on the weekend of February 23 where the Open Class colorguard placed in 3rd with a score of 72.90 in the final round, while the A Class earned a score of 59.65 in the semi-finals.
The regional competition is composed mainly of groups from Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, and Ohio, and all of the teams must travel to Indianapolis to perform in front of experienced judges and make their opening statement for this season.
The setup of the classes for colorguard competition are divided into Scholastic, or those teams associated with schools, and Independent, teams that were formed by dance studios or other similar organizations. Along with that, there are classes ranging from Triple A, mostly including elementary and middle school students, to World, composed of the top teams in the sport. Advancements can occur with success at World Finals in April, and demotion can occur due to other issues such as funding or a change in coaches.
“We’re told all the time that a program can fall to pieces in less than a year,” explained sophomore Kimberly Haggerty. “If you don’t care and try to maintain it, then it’s not going to work. I think everyone here cares, though; I know the girls are awesome, and the parents are great with helping out, too.”
This competition was a vital step in the climb for WGI World Finals. Central is currently home to the only Scholastic Open Class colorguard in the state of Michigan; their main competitor from previous seasons, Lake Orion, was moved back down to A Class this year. Because of this, competition at in-state events is nonexistent. In the past four years, the Open Guard has been undefeated as our state-level champions, and last year our A Class guard came in second place.
“I’m really excited for the rest of the season,” said Andrea Ratsos, a junior on the Open team. “This is our first real competition, and it’s amazing that the show was received so well.”
The opportunity to go out and see how their show relates to other possible competitors’ is increasingly important as the show gets closer to being finished. It allows for the coaches to make the necessary changes before their last performance and final placement in the ranks.
“The show is beautiful this year,” said Central alum Shaye Beasley, the former captain of Open guard. “I’m so proud of their performance, and I can’t wait to see it again.”