'Dancing with the Stars' topped by Jaleel White and Katherine Jenkins
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 03/20/2012
Dancing with the Stars' fourteenth-season competition got off to a strong start for actor Jaleel White and opera singer Katherine Jenkins.
White, who is best known for his portrayal of Steve Urkel on ABC's Family Matters sitcom, and his professional partner Kym Johnson finished tied for first place with Jenkins and her partner Mark Ballas on the judges' leaderboard during Dancing with the Stars' fourteenth-season premiere on Monday night.
Singer Gavin DeGraw and partner Karina Smirnoff, former Little House on the Prairie star Melissa Gilbert and partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy, and tennis legend Martina Navratilova and partner Tony Dovolani finished tied for tenth -- and last -- place at the bottom of the leaderboard after they each performed a routine which received only 20 points from the judges.
DeGraw and Smirnoff and Navratilova and Dovolani both performed foxtrot routines, while Gilbert and Chmerkovskiy danced the cha cha.
Actor and telenovela star William Levy finished in third place with partner Cheryl Burke after they earned 24 points for their cha cha performance.
Fourth place on the judges' leaderboard represented a tie between singer Gladys Knight, comedienne and The View co-host Sherri Shepherd, actor and Disney Channel star Roshon Fegan, and actor and former Melrose Place star Jack Wagner after they all earned 23 points for their dances from the judges.
Knight and partner Tristan MacManus and Fegan and partner Chelsie Hightower danced the cha cha, while Shepherd and partner Val Chmerkovskiy and Wagner and partner Anna Trebunskaya performed foxtrot routines.
Entertainment reporter and Extra host Maria Menounos and partner Derek Hough and NFL player Donald Driver and partner Peta Murgatroyd finished tied for eighth place on the judges' leaderboard. Both couples performed cha cha routines which received 21 points from the judges.
All 12 fourteenth-season Dancing with the Stars couples will return for another two-hour performance show on Monday, March 26, after which the judges' scoring and home viewer voting results from both shows will be combined and one couple will be eliminated on the season's first results show on Tuesday, March 27.