Haydenettes use 'Muse' to claim senior short

Crystallettes finish second; Miami University takes third

The Haydenettes bring a 3.86-point lead over the Crystallettes into the free skate.
The Haydenettes bring a 3.86-point lead over the Crystallettes into the free skate. (Ed Collier Photography)


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By Renee Felton, special to
(03/02/2012) - According to the Haydenettes, the best is yet to come. Though thrilled with their first-place showing in the short program at the 2012 U.S. Synchronized Championships -- they received 64.26 points for their "Dancing with the Muse" -- they are looking forward to displaying their Lady Gaga-themed free skate Saturday.

"We are hoping to apply what we accomplished today to what we will do tomorrow," team co-captain Lindsay Grajek said. "We want to engage the fans. Our free skate is something so unique and we can't wait to perform."

The team reworked both programs after their second-place finish at Neuchatel Trophy last month, with the adjustments certainly paying dividends Friday with a season high score.

"We knew we had a lot of room to improve after our international competition," coach Saga Krantz explained. "In the last two weeks, every element in the short program changed, and we made a lot of adjustments to the free skate as well. It's a good feeling to receive our best score of the season after making the changes."

The short program started strong with a Level 4 block that netted 6.49 points, including a 1.29 grade of execution (GOE) mark. The skate continued with other high-scoring elements, including a Level 4 wheel and Level 4 moves in the field segment. Despite one fall, the Haydenettes lead the field by nearly four points.

The Crystallettes, in second with 60.40 points, aren't shy about their desire to add more gold to their trophy case this year. The Dearborn FSC representatives got what team captain Katilyn Peterson called a "great confidence boost" after winning gold at Neuchatel Trophy, a win that also included besting the Haydenettes.

Coach Shannon Peterson felt Friday's short program was an improvement over what they performed at Neuchatel.

"It was a very solid and fun performance," she said. "We got a better score than we did in Switzerland, which is always a positive."

The "Mercy" short program featured a Level 4 move in the field worth 7.06 points and Level 3 circular step sequence that added 6.20.

The team realizes the importance of Saturday's free skate in determining the winner.

"Our goal is to go out and attack the free skate," Peterson said. "We expect a great outcome, and I have no problem admitting we want to win."

Co-captain Meghan Quigley was quick to agree, simply stating, "We want to be considered 'Team USA 1' when the 2012 U.S. World Team is selected on Saturday."

Viva Miami! Rounding out the top three with a score of 57.98 points is Miami University Senior. Their short program, set to music from the Cirque de Soleil "Viva Elvis" show, brought the DCU Center to life.

"That was an excellent skate," coach Carla DeGirolamo said. "The girls went out there and lit up the ice. They skated with so much energy and worked as a unit. They embraced the character and had the crowd hooked."