Local Synchronized Skating Team Wins Big In Sectionals
Feb 06, 2015 12:03PM
● By Tom Heraldson
The Star Lit Blades of Salt Lake City took the gold at the 2015 Midwest and Pacific Coast Synchronized Skating Sectional Championships, held in Minneapolis on Jan. 29.
The Star Lit Blades Synchronized Skating Team, including members from Cottonwood Heights, Murray and Taylorsville, returned home from Minnesota with something shiny—gold medals as champions of the 2015 Midwest and Pacific Coast Synchronized Skating Sectional Championships.
Held on Jan. 29 in Minneapolis, the championship involved nine teams from throughout the western United States. Each team consists of between eight and 20 skaters performing together in unison while connected in a line. The Star Lit Blades were the only team from Utah
“Skating as a team is very different from individual skating,” said Ellie Karamati, one of the team’s coaches. “You have to work as a team on every step and every turn. One misstep from one skater can cause the whole team to fall on the ice.”
She said that following the team’s performance, as they left the ice, many had tears in their eyes because, “We all knew it was the best performance of the routine they’d ever done.”
The Star Lit Blades established their team in 2013 under the direction of Kelly Cassity and Karamati. Each skater has to be proficient on their own before earning a place on the team. Even skilled individual skaters have to learn how to work with others in this team-oriented sport, Karamati said.
There are approximately 525 synchronized skating teams registered with U.S. Figure Skating, with nearly 5,000 athletes participating annually in the Sectional Championships across different regions. The Star Lit Blades competed this year at the Open Juvenile level against teams from Colorado, California, Washington and other states in the Pacific Coast Region.
The team isn’t going to stop there. Next year, they’ll compete at the intermediate level, and a win there will qualify them to participate in Nationals.