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Father-daughter dance team wins national shag dance competition

The Shag is the official dance of South Carolina and since 1984 the National Shag Dance Competition has taken place in Myrtle Beach.

This year, it was a sweet father-daughter duo won the “longest continually running” shag competition.

It’s not a pairing we normally see, but their performance is a spectacular sight.

Shag dancing runs in the West family and it has been carried on by father Sam, his wife Lisa, his son Mack, and his daughter Sydney.

According to Sam and Lisa’s website, Sam started dancing at age 9 when his mother Barbara took up the activity.

Over the course of his early dance career, he and his partners won two junior national titles, a Non-Pro National title, and an Overall National Shag Champions title.

In 1995, he brought the dance back into the family by pairing up with his sister Sarah and taking home 8 Professional Division titles and 4 Overall titles (the pair were also inducted into the Shagger’s Hall of Fame Keepers of the Dance in 1999).

More recently, Sam won Pro and Overall Shag titles in 2001, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014, 2016, and 2017 with four different partners. His list of awards even goes on from there!

When he met his wife Lisa, who began her dance career at the age of 27, she and her dance partner at the time had won the 1997 US Open Cabaret Championship and she was a two-time winner of the American Swing Dance Championships in the Showcase Division.

The two met in 1998 but began dancing together later, winning their first title together in the Sophisticated Swing Division in 2010 and then conquering the US Open Swing Dance Championships in 2010, 2012, and in 2016.

It’s no surprise that the couple raised kids who dance. Sam and Lisa’s son Mack West is a world-class junior shag dancer with his partner Trinity Davis.

But it’s Sam’s performance with his daughter Sidney that has drawn the attention of tens of thousands of viewers in the few weeks since it was posted online.

In 2020, Sam and Sydney won the Professional Division Champions in the National Shag Dance Championships for the second year in a row!

In their 2020 performance, the duo truly makes it look easy to sweep around the floor.

With their legs looking positive elastic they execute swipes and spins that only masters could make look attainable to us regular folks.

If you’ve seen teen Mack West’s performances, you know it’s a West family tradition for the men to take center stage.

Sam is no different, doing a series of twirls and solo moves.

Of course, that’s par for the course when you have a legend on the dance floor.

While the two look dead serious at first, smiles come out towards the end of the performance, perhaps when the pair feel like they’ve really nailed it.

And before the dynamic duo even finishes the audience begins to give them a standing ovation.

They clearly know superior dancing when they see it and Sam and Syndey’s moves were simply too much to keep them in their seats.

Their routine set to Eric Marienthal’s cover of “Stand By Me” was no doubt one of their more cherished family moments – and it certainly made an impression on viewers.

“I know Sam has to be so proud to have danced with his daughter in the Nationals and they will have special memories that they will NEVER forget. While I was watching the video my eyes were leaking,” said one.

We have no doubt about that.

Be sure to scroll down below to see Sam and Sydney West wipe the floor with the competition at the 2020 National Shag Competitions.

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