Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough Overcome Obstacles on Emotional Night on 'Dancing With the Stars'

by Meredith B. Kile 9:10 PM PDT, September 22, 2015
Playing Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough Overcome Obstacles on Emotional Night on 'Dancing With the Stars'

Night two of "Hometown Glory" week on Dancing With the Stars had emotions running high as the professional dance partners paid tribute to their roots and the people most important to them.

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Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough kept "Team Crikey" going strong with their waltz set to Jonny Lang’s "Only a Man," though they were penalized by the judges for doing a lift in their routine, which is not allowed by the rules of the ballroom dance.

One day after paying tribute to her late father Steve Irwin the 17-year-old had only praise for her pro partner, who opened up about feeling "bullied" and growing up in the U.S. and the U.K.

"It’s just because of the love and support from my family and from Derek for just being the most amazing teammate," Irwin gushed after receiving another set of high scores, though they weren’t at the top of the leaderboard this time around. "This is all about that teamwork. Not only do I have a friend, but he feels like an older brother, and we’re working together."

Irwin continued to turn on the charm, confessing to Hough during rehearsals why she was struggling to get the complicated dance steps down.

"My brain is bugging me today," she admitted. "If you could paint a picture right now – a picture of Bindi’s brain, it would be a beautiful daisy meadow and there would be a fine mist over the meadow."

We certainly can picture it! And Irwin and Hough weren’t the only DWTS pairs having a great night.

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After a tough fall during Monday's performance, Backstreet Boy Nick Carter was determined to redeem himself. His pro partner Sharna Burgess became very emotional when talking about her Australian hometown and her father, who is on dialysis for kidney failure and has never been able to travel to Los Angeles to watch her perform.

"I have to get it right, that’s why I’m stressing the heck out," Carter said before the couple’s dance, promising his partner that they wouldn’t be going home. He was right, the couple’s emotional foxtrot performance netted them one of the night’s highest scores.

Alexa PenaVega also shared an emotional moment in her dance as pro partner Mark Ballas paid tribute to his parents, a professional Latin ballroom dancing pair. Ballas choreographed the couple’s rumba, including his mother’s signature move, and both he and PenaVega’s husband Carlos, a fellow DWTS competitor, got emotional as the actress "nailed" the turn and split, as Ballas’ mother looked on from the audience.

Tamar Braxton and her partner Val Chmerkovskiy walked away with the highest score of the night after their Charleston -- which was ferociously debated by the pair throughout the week -- impressed the judges in a big way.

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Unfortunately, Triple Crown-winning jockey Victor Espinoza and partner Karina Smirnoff were eliminated, despite Tuesday’s rumba being his best dance yet.

"I had an amazing time and especially tonight," Espinoza told the crowd. "It was special to me because I wanted to dance for Karina and everyone else with all my heart."

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Tamar Braxton and Val Chmerkovskiy: 25 of 30

Nick Carter and Sharna Burgess: 24 of 30

Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough: 23 of 30

Hayes Grier and Emma Slater: 23 of 30

Andy Grammer and Allison Holker: 23 of 30

Alek Skarlatos and Lindsay Arnold: 22 of 30

Alexa PenaVega and Mark Ballas: 22 of 30

Carlos PenaVega and Witney Carson: 21 of 30

Victor Espinoza and Karina Smirnoff (eliminated): 20 of 30

Paula Deen and Louis van Amstel: 18 of 30

Kim Zolciak-Biermann and Tony Dovolani: 18 of 30

Gary Busey and Anna Trebunskaya: 15 of 30

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