Education

West Orange High School Boys Step Team Wins National Youth Step USA Competition

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William Farley, left, and the boys' step team. Members include Georges, Jared, Jawuan, Asher, Paul, Zalen, Zeke, Reggie, Jaynick, Nick, Marc, aka 'Coal', Billy, aka 'Cornbread', Orlando, Amir, Paris, Jay, Quadir, Justin and Khari. Credits: West Orange Schools
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WEST ORANGE, NJ - On May 26, the West Orange High School Boys Step Team won the National Youth Step USA competition in Harrisburg, Penn. Sixteen teams competed, including steppers from Oklahoma, North and South Carolina, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Texas and New Jersey. There are 17 West Orange High School boys on the team. The winning routine was "Nerds Trying to Get a Popular Girl to Like Us."

William Farley, the team’s advisor and music educator at WOHS, won National Coach of the Year. Six of the steppers, including team captain Georges "Cannon" Dorcely, are graduating on Thursday. College and other plans for these graduates include Kean University, Montclair State, Penn State, and the Air Force. Some plan on going into the medical field, some hotel management/business, the arts, and one as a flyer for the military.

In an interview with Georges "Cannon" Dorcely, Team Captain and graduating senior, the following information about West Orange's National Champions was provided.

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"Being on the step team takes a lot of commitment and dedication," Dorcely said. "Without being dedicated, we cannot pull out of you what we know we can. Being a step team member is a mixture of coordination, acting, athleticism, and more. Everyone on the step team is talented in their own way and we take that talent and make it work to the best of our abilities. We take every members' weakness and make it into something positive."

Dorcely continued, "It takes time to make a routine. Making an individual step for a routine is something that can't be forced, but be inspired by something. Though the boiling point may come, we usually put things together the week of the competition and really perfom it with all our hearts that day. We call the competition week 'hell week.' That's because no one can drink water and we just drill them to the max. We do not do this to torture them, but so by the time competition time arrives, their stamina will be at its peak. Steppers may feel as if they are not going hard, but they're actually doing amazingly well. At the end of the day, we become a family and we help each other. We've been compared to the best of the best step teams out there. We even get compared to college organizations and have  been complimented that we are equal or better! This is the first year we went on the road to compete nationally. We had taken the crown locally, but nationals pitted us against teams that hadn't lost in four years. Yet we won the Nationals!  Being on the step team is more than dance and fun. It takes hard work, brotherhood, and love. Without these components, we are NOTHING. We all believe in family and that's something people don't understand. We fight, and we make up. That's what makes us different from others."

For a video of the WOHS Boys Step Team routines, check out their 'Ab-Salute' YouTube Video from
February:  www.youtube.com/watch?v=yZ54PLalbkA.

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