Back in the States and a week later, and I can still feel the energy and excitement that all 4 US teams brought to the 2011 Spring Cup.
Saturday morning, we woke up in Milan to skate our short program official practice. The practice went well, but we knew that we could perform better that night for the competition. The rest of the day we waited, until finally hair and makeup rolled around and the excitement started to flow through us all. On our walk to the rink we blasted our Bose box and belted out our traditional pump-up songs. Before we knew it we were lined up rink side. Then we took the ice, enthusiastically expressing our way through the short program. We were very happy with our score of a 55. We quickly took off our skates and headed for the stands where American flags were handed out. As Evolution and Hockettes took the ice, we cheered loudly and waved our flags proudly for their great skates. Once all 3 junior teams were together, we were ready to cheer on Miami University, who had a wonderful senior short program skate. Soon it was time to sleep and prepare ourselves for the long.
Sunday morning it rained as we walked to the rink for our official practice, but as our performance the night before showed, “nothing could rain on our parade!” So we all trudged to the rink with 20 umbrellas over our heads. Later, as it continued to rain, we went back to the rink, once again blasting our music, ready to compete. As we took the ice, I looked up into the stands and spotted Evolution and Hockettes cheering us on. Their cheers meant so much to us and pushed us even further in our performance. Once again we were very happy with our score of 102, but even more than that, we were thrilled that the Hockettes had moved up after the short program and all 3 U.S. junior teams had just swept the podium. Back up in the stands we cheered on Miami as they skated through their free skate, earning the bronze medal.
We took the ice for the awards ceremony with huge smiles on our faces. Standing on the podium we were handed a beautiful blown glass trophy that was much heavier than we expected. Turning and putting our hands over our hearts, we watched 3 American flags rise in synchronicity as we proudly sang our nation anthem. I was overcome with pride in our country and honored to be a part of Team USA. We took picture after picture with our own teams, our friends from other teams, and then as a full Team USA team.
The competition and trip as a whole were amazing and all of the US teams did a phenomenal job. I had such a great time traveling with, catching up with, and making new friends on Evolution, Hockettes, and Miami. Looking forward to seeing everyone in California for the U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships in less than 2 weeks!