“Enjoy the moment and have fun,” Coach Diane George reminds the Villanova Twirlers as they run out to the football field to perform in front of excited Villanova students, families, alumni and fans. The talented group of seven girls stands ready to perform their complex routine alongside the Villanova Band, Dance Team and Cheerleading Team.
The Villanova Twirlers, a co-ed baton twirling group, have become a significant presence on Villanova’s campus. They perform at home football and basketball games throughout the academic year, as well as at special events, such as the St. Thomas of Villanova Day of Service, Special Olympics,and parades near the University. Most recently, the Twirlers enjoyed performing at the Upper Merion Township Community Fair and Fall Festival.
This year, sophomore Sammie Dolloff, junior Savannah Holliday and senior Karlee Koswick welcomed four new talented freshman to the group: Serena Matos, Irene Sul, Kaitlyn Eddy and Megan Clark. “We are a very supportive and close-knit group,” Dolloff remarks.
The Twirlers describe George as an “inspiring, kind and compassionate” leader. George has been a twirler all her life and has trained the Villanova Twirlers for over three decades. She enjoys helping the Twirlers improve their baton twirling skills. The team can attest that George’s passion and love for twirling is simply contagious.
The Villanova Twirlers practice three times a week for approximately seven hours total. They are passionate about baton twirling and dedicated to practicing as often as they can to create challenging and creative routines for audiences to enjoy. Audiences especially loved their performance at the Family Weekend football game as they twirled to the iconic soundtrack from Disney-Pixar’s “The Incredibles.”
Many of the Twirlers started baton twirling their freshman year. However, Matos and Holliday have twirled since ages 9 and 13, respectively. Always looking for new teammates, the Villanova Twirlers welcome members of all experience levels.
“There is absolutely no experience necessary to become a Villanova Twirler,” Dolloff said. “We have such a wonderful coach and a group of girls who are able to coordinate routines and teach skills that allow you to improve.”
Matos agrees and expresses her love for the group: “Being a part of the Villanova Twirlers has introduced me to so many amazing girls and has given me the opportunity to make wonderful friendships.”
The group enjoys creating and practicing new routines because those are great ways to celebrate Villanova’s athletics and school spirit.
“We love our school, and we are so proud to celebrate it through the art of baton twirling,” Dolloff said.
Baton twirling, although complex, is undeniably fun. Sul, a new member of the Villanova Twirlers, adds, “I learned so much about twirling and its rich history the first week I started.”
Villanovans can watch the Villanova Twirlers perform at upcoming football games and basketball games this fall and throughout the academic year. Details about the Twirlers and their upcoming performance locations can be found on their instagram page @villanova_twirlers.