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Plant City Courier

Baton twirling team wins trophy case of awards at national competition

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Published:   |   Updated: August 21, 2014 at 03:41 PM

Ten members of Patrick’s Patriots Twirling Corps won 20 awards as a team and individually at a recent national competition.

The honors at the America’s Youth on Parade competition included Brittany Nesbitt’s national championship in beginner flag baton and a second-place team finish in the senior large beginner dance twirl division.

The Patriots have taken part for decades in the annual contest at the University of Notre Dame, group founder Barbara Patrick said. She attributed the team’s successes to her twirlers’ dedication to twice-per-week rehearsals leading up to the trip.

“It’s how hard you practice and how hard you work. You get out of it what you put into it,” Patrick said.

The weeklong competition in South Bend, Ind., was sponsored by the National Baton Twirling Association. The Patriots who attended included Morgan Boykin, Amber Boykin, Brittany Nesbitt, Raelyn Hudson, Kaylee Hudson, Montia Heatherly, Maddie Weiss, Sarah Cameron, Jackie Swartz and Natalie Bolet.

The following is a list of each twirler, her school and the awards she won:

♦ Brittany, Plant City High senior, first place, beginner flag baton; seventh, beginner 2-baton; eighth, intermediate pageant solo and beginner duet with partner Raelyn Hudson; and ninth, intermediate pageant modeling.

♦ Morgan, University of South Florida feature twirler, third, intermediate 2-baton; and sixth, advance solo.

♦ Amber, Strawberry Crest High School freshman, eighth, intermediate X-strut.

♦ Raelyn, Independence Academy eighth-grader, fifth, beginner 2-baton and beginner flag baton; and eighth, beginner duet with her partner, Brittany Nesbitt.

♦ Kaylee, Independence Academy third-grader; third place, beginner flag baton; eighth, beginner 2-baton; and 10th, beginner X-strut.

♦ Sarah, Lakeland High junior, eighth, intermediate 2-baton.

♦ Natalie, Newsome High junior, fourth, beginner solo.

♦ Madison, Newsome High School sophomore, sixth, beginner solo and show twirl; and ninth, 3-baton.

♦ Jackie, a recent Wiregrass Ranch High graduate, eighth, novice solo.

♦ Montia, a Newsome High senior, competed in several categories for individuals but did not place in the top 10.

Barbara Patrick leads the Patriots with the help of her daughter, Lynann Patrick-Hudson.

The team begins a new season this month. Classes start Monday at the Brandon Recreation Center and Aug. 28 at Plant City’s Planteen Recreation Center.

Contact Patrick at (813) 626-4554 or twirlnbta florida@aol.com.

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