Sunsational Sisters

Sophomore Rochelle Bradley performs with the Sunsations at a basketball game against North Carolina Central Saturday.  Alex Broadwell // The Miami Hurricane

Sophomore Rochelle Bradley performs with the Sunsations at a basketball game against North Carolina Central Saturday. Alex Broadwell // The Miami Hurricane

Sometimes female athletes consider their bonds with their teammates to be sisterly, even though they aren’t really related. For two members of the University of Miami’s Sunsations Dance Team, however, they actually are.

Nicole Bradley and younger sister Rochelle have been dancing together since the age of three. Together, they followed their dancing dreams to UM’s Sunsations Dance Team.

Senior Nicole, double majoring in print journalism and sports administration, joined the team her junior year, while sophomore Rochelle, a psychology major, joined her freshman year.

“Its kind of weird now because I am a veteran but my sister is older than me,” co-captain Rochelle said. “But we get along just fine.”

For the Bradley sisters it was a no-brainer to choose to attend UM- their parents, as well as three other relatives, are all alumni.

“They are wonderful girls and wonderful teammates,” head coach Kristine Stevenson said. “They help everybody out and they offer a lot to the team in terms of support.”

Rochelle and Nicole were both members of their high school dance teams. They attended Miami Northwestern Senior High and Miami Norlands Senior High respectively. They also danced competitively through dance programs such as Hip-Hop Kidz of Miami and Children’s Dance Theatre of South Florida.

“We’ve always supported each other, no matter what teams we are on,” Nicole said.

They also support each other through each try-out process, which occurs at the beginning and end of every spring. The Sunsations set up tables in the University Center to recruit before each try-out.

What most people don’t know about the Sunsations is that they do a lot of promotional events on top of dancing at home football games and most of the men and women’s basketball games. This year they have gone to approximately six different elementary schools to help out for Red Ribbon Week, a week devoted to drug prevention and awareness. They also volunteered at the second annual BasketBowl, the men’s basketball fundraiser at Splitsville.

“We are ambassadors of the university,” Stevenson said. “So we try to do as much community service as possible. I’m a firm believer in diversity and positive female image.”

The Bradley sisters said that for them, dancing doesn’t stop with their graduation from UM. They each have the dream of dancing for the Miami Heat or the Miami Dolphins.

Emily Wingrove may be contacted at

November 18, 2009


Emily Wingrove

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