MILLBURN, N.J. — Millburn High School students Virginia Barney, Audrey Laude, Ethne Laude and Joselyn Song and township resident Jessica Hu began their Skyliners Junior Team USA international synchronized skating season with a gold medal win at the Cup of Berlin last weekend.
The team finished ahead of squads from Finland, Germany, France, Switzerland and the United States. Skyliners Junior, the reigning U.S. Junior Champions and fourth at the 2017 ISU World Junior Synchronized Skating Championships, also took the gold medal at competitions in Anaheim in November and Ann Arbor in December. The team skates next at the French Cup in Rouen, France, February 2.
Skyliners was established in 2001 by a group of parents who wanted to create the most competitive synchronized skating club in the tri-state area. In that first year, the team had three lines – Preliminary, Juvenile and Intermediate. Seventeen years later, Skyliners has grown into one of the top synchronized skating teams in the country, now 12 lines and 230+ skaters strong. While the majority of the skaters reside in the tri-state area, Skyliners also have skaters from Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin. The team's resume of achievements includes 21 Eastern Championships, 10 National Championships, 8 International gold medals and 10 years designated Team USA.
Synchronized skating consists of 8-20 highly-skilled athletes performing a program on ice together, moving as one flowing unit. It is characterized by teamwork, speed, intricate formations and challenging step sequences. There are approximately 600 synchronized teams and nearly 5000 synchronized skaters in the U.S. alone, with elite competitions at both the national and international level. Although not currently an Olympic sport, there is significant movement toward including it at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games.
Visit the Skyliners at www.skylinerssynchro.com to learn more about this successful team.