Three Ursuline Academy students, Emily '21 and Alise Schneider '24 and Brianna McIntyre '21, will compete on Boston-based Team Excel Junior, a synchronized skating team representing the Skating Club of Boston, at the U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships February 26-29, 2020 in Providence, RI. Team Excel Junior took second place at the Eastern Synchronized Skating Sectional Championships earlier in January, earning them a bid to compete on the national stage.
“I would like to commend Emily, Alise, and Brianna and all our Team Excel skaters for their accomplishments,” said Team Excel Director of Synchronized Skating Merita Mullen. “This year marks the first time that our organization will send four teams to the U.S. Championships and the first time in Team Excel’s history that our Juvenile Team has qualified to compete at nationals. These achievements are a true testament to the effort and dedication of our skaters, as well as the commitment and support of our entire Team Excel family—coaches, parents, and volunteers alike. We are incredibly proud of their success.”
Synchronized skating is a demanding discipline of figure skating in which teams of eight to 20 skaters perform a program together, blending elements of singles skating, pairs skating, and ice dance. Programs are characterized by teamwork, speed, intricate formations and challenging step sequences. Athletes in this sport work and train diligently year-round. Team Excel’s teams practice eleven months a year, for a minimum of 12 hours a week, on and off the ice. In addition, each skater trains with private coaches on individual skating skills, such as footwork, edge quality, freestyle jumps and spins, and ice dance.
Back Row: Brooke Robbins, Nicole Catalano, Amy Gordon, Madeline Amidon, Casandra Douglass, Belina Vezza
Middle Row: Alexa Ells, Catherine Callahan, Sierra Madden, Hannah Parker, Emily Schneider '21, Olivia Lynch
Front Row: Grace McMurray, Genevieve Gerenz, Allie Lewis, Brianna McIntyre '21, Alise Schneider '24
Photo credit: Scott Malone