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Local skaters win medals at provincials, qualify for future events

(From left) Kaitlyn Snow, Megan Walsh, Karlee Edison, Hannah Sheehan, Hailey Budgell and Kallie Stone all won medals for the Sparkling Blades Figure Skating Club at provincials.
(From left) Kaitlyn Snow, Megan Walsh, Karlee Edison, Hannah Sheehan, Hailey Budgell and Kallie Stone all won medals for the Sparkling Blades Figure Skating Club at provincials. - Matthew Molloy

GRAND FALLS-WINDSOR, NL – The Sparkling Blades Figure Skating Club of Grand Falls-Windsor and Seaport Skaters Figure Skating Club of Botwood saw a total of nine athletes bring home medals from last month’s provincial championships in Mount Pearl.

From the Sparkling Blades, Kaitlyn Snow finished first in STAR 5 Women Under 10, Kallie Stone finished second in STAR 4 Girls Under 13, Hailey Budgell finished second in Juvenile Women Under 12, Megan Walsh finished second in Juvenile Women Under 14 and Karlee Edison finished third. Hannah Sheehan finished third in Novice Women.

From the Seaport Skaters, Riley Jerrett earned a second-place finish in STAR 6 Men and first in Pre Novice Dance, while fellow Seaport skater Brooklyn Watkins and Sarah Moore earned gold in Special Olympics Level 2 Women. Watkins also picked up a gold medal in Pre-Juvenile Women Under 13.

It was a great showing from the central clubs, with members qualifying for the Newfoundland and Labrador Winter Games and upcoming Atlantic Skating Championships.

Watkins is one of the skaters who won a medal at provincials and qualified for both events. However, when asked about her own achievements, she could only talk about her teammates.

“I’m just so proud of all my teammates and how every single one of them performed at provincials. I really thought everyone skated so well, and everyone skated to the best of their ability, which is what our coaches want us to do.”

Watkins, along with Jerrett, competed in dance as a team, along with their own solo competitions. Watkins said she had to go into both skates with two different mindsets.

“It’s totally different,” said the 13-year-old. “You have to make sure you are completely on time with your partner during the dance competition. It’s like a totally different sport than the solo competition.”

Like Watkins, Sparkling Blades skaters Emily Hayden and Walsh were also proud of their teammates at provincials.

Hayden qualified for Atlantics, while Walsh earned a provincial silver and a berth at Atlantics. Budgell, Snow, Edison, Julianne Howse, and Jamie Powell will also compete at Atlantics for the Sparkling Blades.

Jillian Rice of the Seaport Skaters qualified for Atlantics along with Watkins.

“I’m really excited to go to Atlantics,” said Hayden. “I’m also very excited and honoured to represent Newfoundland and Labrador in a different province. It’s going to be a pretty cool experience.”

“I feel really good about my performance at provincials, winning a medal and qualifying for Atlantics,” added Walsh. “In the first category, STAR 7, I never qualified for Atlantics, but I knew I had another shot to qualify. When I ended up winning a medal and found out I qualified for Atlantics, I was really, really excited.”

The figure skating competition at the provincial winter games is taking place March 15-16 in Deer Lake and Atlantics will take place April 6-8 at the East Hants Sportsplex in Nova Scotia.

The Sparkling Blades will host their figure skating show on April 22, starring Kaetlyn Osmond, and the Seaport Skaters will host their ice show on March 29.

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