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Road to nationals: IC dance to perform at Busch Stadium


The Illinois College dance team is getting an opportunity to showcase its skills at a somewhat larger venue than a Blueboys football game.

Audrey Clayton | Journal-Courier

The dance team is set to travel to St. Louis to perform at Ford Plaza before the Cardinals take on the Los Angeles Dodgers on Thursday, Sept. 13. The exhibition is a perk for selling Cardinals tickets as part of a fundraiser to help raise money for the team’s trip to nationals in Daytona Beach, Florida. 

“We qualified to go to nationals back in August at a camp at Lindenwood University,” IC Dance Coach Samantha Laster said. “It’s to help the cost. I contacted the Cardinals group leader and he gave me the information. He said if (we) sell tickets that we could come and perform there.”

This is Laster’s second year with the IC dance team, and this is the first year that the team has been competitive, making their trip to nationals even more special.

“I’m very excited,” said team captain and Cardinal fan Chauntel Vance ’19. “It’s even more exciting for me that I’m able to go and perform at my favorite MLB team stadium. It’s exciting because it’s the first time we’ve actually performed off-campus somewhere. Being a senior and getting to lead the team is really exciting, going to nationals in Daytona Beach for the first time. Sad it’s my senior year and I only get to do it once, but one time is better than none.”

Vance will be joined by other dance team members Anna Bezler ’22, Jacy Castlebury ’22, Angela Dorethy ’21, Sydney Hembrough ’22, Hannah Pugh ’22, Asia Watson ’21 and Breanne Kaufmann ’22

“We’re extremely proud of Sam and everything she’s doing with our dance program,” IC Assistant Athletic Director Meghan Roman said. “Extremely excited about this group of young women and everything that they’re going to do this year. This is the first competitive dance team we’ve had at Illinois College. This will be the first run to national competition, and we’re excited to watch it happen.”

The dance team will be selling tickets to Thursday’s game up until Wednesday, Sept. 12. Tickets are $10 each. If interested, contact Coach Laster at

About Illinois College

Founded in 1829, Illinois College is a residential liberal arts college fostering academic excellence rooted in opportunities for experiential learning while preparing students for lifelong success. The college is located in Jacksonville, Illinois. With an enrollment of about 1,000 students, the college offers over 50 undergraduate programs. In 1932 the society of Phi Beta Kappa established a chapter at Illinois College, and it remains one of only 11 in the state.

Illinois College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.

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