Synchroettes, Team Del Sol win at U.S. Synchros
First-ever U.S. gold in juvenile for Synchroettes
|Synchroettes topped the podium in the juvenile free skate. (Paul Harvath)|
By Lauren Magliola, special to icenetwork.com
(03/04/2010) - The Synchroettes wished upon a star, and on Thursday night at the Mariucci Arena, their wish came true. The skaters from West Orange, N.J., were awarded the first gold medal of the 2010 U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships in Minneapolis, Minn., when they won the juvenile division, earning five first-place ordinals in the process. This is the first gold medal for the team representing the Essex Skating Club, which placed fourth at this event last year. "It wasn't about the place we got," said skater Irene Petrocelli, "It was how we skated." When asked what they would do to celebrate their victory, the team stuck with their "When You Wish Upon A Star" theme, answering, "We're going to Disney World!" The silver medal was awarded to the Skyliners, representing the Skating Club of New York. The team skated a technically difficult program to music from Mamma Mia, including an interacting and pivoting line element. "I was really proud," said head coach Natalie Martello, "They saved the skate of a lifetime for nationals." Last year's juvenile champion, Chicago Jazz, earned the bronze medal. The Jazz skated to a "Surprise Birthday Party" theme in pink dresses resembling a birthday cake. "They've really stepped it up all week," said head coach Kristi Frank. "To put it all out there when it really counted was the 'icing on the cake.'" The Crystallettes of Dearborn, Mich., took home the pewter medal. This year's team is made up of skaters who had previously skated on the Crystallettes preliminary and open juvenile teams. "We're thrilled to death to be at nationals," said head coach Holly Teets. "We couldn't be happier to have earned a medal." Intermediate Team Del Sol took home the top prize in the ever tight intermediate division Thursday night, earning 55.16 points. Although the team from San Diego, Calif., has earned many U.S. Championship medals throughout the years, this is only the second-ever gold medal earned by a team representing the San Diego Figure Skating Club. The team, which skated to "Superstition" by Stevie Wonder and "Ramalama (Bang Bang)" by Roisin Murphy, skated with a focus on presentation and performance. "We were very pleased with how they skated," said head coach Karen Wiesemeier. "Their focus was on their performance, and they performed well." Earning a place on the podium for the first time, Team Reflections, from Harrisburg, Pa., took home the silver medal. The team earned 53.89 points for its "Space"-themed program, which included music from Star Trek. "We've been working on this for a long time" said coach Amy Henderson. The bronze medal went to the Fond du Lac Blades from Fond du Lac, Wis. The team, this year's Midwestern Sectional champions, earned 53.89 points, skating to "You Raise Me Up." "Our goal was to skate clean," said coach Jenny McMahon. "We we're very excited." Last year's intermediate champions, Team Image, skated first in the event, earning 51.49 points. After watching 11 teams perform, the skaters from Yonkers, N.Y., were happy to see their scores keep them in fourth place and earn them the pewter medal. "I felt they skated a tough, good program," said head coach Sylvia Muccio. "You can always do a little bit more, but after the pressure cooker we were in after winning last year, we're very happy they skated a good performance."