The Faribault Emeralds dance team performed their way to a 10th high kick division title at the Target Center in downtown Minneapolis on Saturday night.

During the awards ceremony, the other teams in the AAA high kick division finals held hands and stood away from the Faribault team as a protest to their first-place finish. They claim the Emeralds copied a dance from an out-of-state team and shouldn't be the champions.

On their website, the Minnesota State High School League issued a statement: "On February 9 MSHSL staff was made aware of a possible rule violation during the Section High Kick competition.  That allegation was investigated by the school and by MSHSL staff. After a review of the report from the school and a review of video and other information, there was complete consensus on the part of League staff and the Dance Team Rule Coordinators that a violation had not occurred. The ruling was made on February 11. On February 12 this ruling was sent via email to all coaches competing in the High Kick Division at the state tournament."

I was not in attendance Saturday night, but some people I know were and they told me the protest by Chaska, Eastview of Apple Valley, Eden Prairie, Lakeville South and Wayzata put a cloud over an otherwise incredible competition. I have no daughters on the team, no relation whatsoever. This is only my opinion. I don't understand why a coach would allow their team to protest after the allegation was investigated. If the allegation had been made for the first time at state, maybe I could see a protest. Not when it was investigated and your own dance team rule coordinators said Faribault didn't break any rules.

If you've ever watched dance teams perform you know all the routines look very similar. I frankly don't know how you can tell one from another. I am not the expert, but people who do know watched video and determined the team didn't copy the dance. That's where this should have ended.

The judges are supposed to rank each team from a score of one to 10, with one being very poor and 10 being superior, in a number of different areas. Kicks: their technique, height, difficulty and posture; execution of the routine, from placement and control to degree of accuracy and difficulty of the choreography, formations and transitions. The judges obviously thought Faribault executed their routine the best. Isn't that the key here? Who executes their routine the best? It's more about the execution than the routine itself isn't it? Below is a picture from Twitter showing the Emeralds on one side of the court and the other dance teams on the other side of the court in protest.