SOUTH ABINGTON TWP. — If you attended this past Saturday’s Abington Heights football game at Comets Stadium, you may have noticed a little more enthusiasm on the sideline.
The Abington Heights Dance Team, consisting of Trinity Berardi, Sarah Pineiro, Destiny Kneiss, Nina Sampogne, Michaelene Kulig and Abby Schrader, will perform at each home football game this season.
Nina and her mom, Laura Sampogne, enjoyed watching the dance team and Penn State University football games and thought it would be a great addition to the game day atmosphere at Abington Heights.
“It’s offers another opportunity for girls who aren’t interested in cheerleading or the marching band to be on the sideline and experience the excitement of The Pit,” Laura Sampogne said. “It allows them to be part of a team and gives them something to put on their high school resume.”
Laura Sampogne presented the idea of starting a dance team to band director Eric Boylan and athletic director Randy Hanyon in the spring. Once it gained approval about 10 girls signed up, but due to scheduling conflicts the group is down to six members.
“The whole idea was to get more kids involved with band and dance,” Laura Sampogne said. “They are all really good dancers.”
Nina Sampogne, a freshman, enjoys playing the saxophone as well as dancing and is able to fulfill both talents this season.
“Girls who perform in the marching band are allowed to travel with the band to away games and perform with the dance team during home games,” Laura Sampogne said.
Laura Sampogne, who previously coached cheerleading at the high school for 10 years, would like to expand the team to about 20 girls next year and has been in contact with girls who are interested in joining.
According to Laura Sampogne, members of the community have also been supportive of the team.
Nickie’s Fabulous Hoagies, of Clarks Summit, volunteered to purchase rain jackets for the group.
The team will perform next on Saturday, Sept. 17 when Abington Heights hosts Hazleton Area.
Reach Robert Tomkavage at 570-704-3941 or on Twitter @rtomkavage.