Club Sports News

Liberty sets team points record in season's first sectional

November 22, 2015  |  Ithaca, N.Y. 

Team members who traveled to Cornell: Front row (from left) Cheyenne Peterson, Sibylle Harter, Laura Gordon, Rebekah Hicks, Maria DeFosse, Megan Gonzalez; back row (from left) Assistant Coach Dawn Harter, Cami Burkhardt, Emily Boyles, Katherine Thacker, Emily Hautbois, Head Coach Jamie Swyers. test test test test
Team members who traveled to Cornell: Front row (from left) Cheyenne Peterson, Sibylle Harter, Laura Gordon, Rebekah Hicks, Maria DeFosse, Megan Gonzalez; back row (from left) Assistant Coach Dawn Harter, Cami Burkhardt, Emily Boyles, Katherine Thacker, Emily Hautbois, Head Coach Jamie Swyers.

The eight members of Liberty University's figure skating team who competed set a school record for most points at Saturday's and Sunday's first of three Eastern Sectional Intercollegiate competitions of the 2015-16 season, hosted by Cornell University at its Lynah Ice Rink in Ithaca, N.Y.

The Lady Flames skated to an eighth-place team showing with 31.5 points, landing top-five finishes in every event they competed in and winning nine medals for top-three performances.

"It was an excellent weekend," Liberty first-year Head Coach Jamie Swyers said. "It was verification that we're doing what we need to do to keep moving forward. We've really raised the bar for our skaters, with more team coaches and off-ice training, and we've seen a lot of improvement."

She said the skaters who made the trip to New York were the ones who put in the time and effort, both on and off the ice."

Though team totals have yet to be posted on the United States Figure Skating Association (USFSA) collegiate website, Liberty led early and placed respectably in the 25-team competition.

The Lady Flames were highlighted by first-place individual finishes from freshman Pre-Juvenile skater Sibylle Harter as well as senior Preliminary skaters Emily Boyles and Maria DeFosse, who competed in different groups. 

They also featured second-place showings from senior Laura Gordon (Pre-Juvenile) and freshman Katherine Thacker (Gold Dance), who performed to a Viennese Waltz.

"Katherine has beautiful extension and a lot of power in her dances, which really made her stand out," Swyers said, noting Gold is the second-highest level for dance.

When Liberty hosts the second Eastern Sectional competition, Feb. 26-27 at the LaHaye Ice Center, Thacker will dance to the Quickstep and later the Argentine Tango on March 12-13 at SUNY-Geneseo.

In Saturday's first event of the competition, Low Team Maneuvers, the Lady Flames' foursome of Harter, Gordon, Thacker, and freshman Megan Gonzalez placed third out of 14 teams in a strong showing of team unity.

"They represented Liberty really well and gave us positive momentum at the very start of the competition," Swyers said.

Gonzalez also placed fourth in Juvenile Freeskate while junior Rebekah Hicks finished fifth in Pre-Juvenile Freeskate and Boyles was fifth in Preliminary Dance. Freshman Cheyenne Peterson, Liberty's highest-level freestyle competitor over the weekend, took fifth in both her Novice short and long programs.

"I am very pleased with Cheyenne's collegiate debut," Swyers said, although she made technical errors in both programs. "She is a real powerhouse and has the ‘wow' factor out on the ice that I am excited about. She has the raw talent that we will continue to develop and polish and is sure to be a skater to watch out for this spring."

She said the weekend road trip was beneficial for team bonding.

"Figure Skating tends to be a very individual, ‘out for yourself' sport (but) in the collegiate competitive track there is a lot of team spirit and a real positive atmosphere," Swyers said. "Our team had the chance to support one another and celebrate each other's success."

Liberty's team maneuvers tandem of Sibylle Harter, Laura Gordon, Megan Gonzalez, and
Katherine Thacker (far left) line up for Saturday's first event at the Eastern Intercollegiate.

Figure Skating Links
Schedule
Results
Feb 13, 8:00 AM - Lahaye Ice Center
vs.
Figure Skating
Liberty Classic Intercollegiate competition
DAYS
HOURS
MINS
SECS
Figure Skating
vs. Liberty Classic Intercollegiate competition
Feb 13, 8:00 AM - Lahaye Ice Center

Figure Skating
vs. Liberty Classic Intercollegiate competition
Feb 14, 8:00 AM - Lahaye Ice Center

Figure Skating
at Penn State Intercollegiate Competition
Mar 6, 8:00 AM - State College, PA

Figure Skating
at Penn State Intercollegiate Competition
Mar 7, 8:00 AM - State College, PA

Figure Skating
at Princeton University
Mar 20, 8:00 AM - Princeton, NJ

Full Schedule

Apr 25
Figure Skating
vs. Praisefest
CANCELLED

Mar 27
Figure Skating
at Intercollegiate Championship
CANCELLED

Mar 8
Figure Skating
at University of Delaware Intercollegiate Competition
2nd place finish

Feb 15
Figure Skating
vs. LU Classic Intercollegiate Competition
2nd Place Finish

Nov 4
Figure Skating
at NYU
8th - Team Finish

More Recaps

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