Skating their way to the top in sync
Photo: Video by tmj4.com
WEST BEND - Most high school students are involved with school sports but sophomore Savannah Kassin at West Bend East choose a different sport to participate in because synchronized skating is not a school sport
“I think I’m the only one who does figure skating in this school,” she said.
Kassin will be trading her shoes in for blades to compete at the national level with 15 other girls on the Fond du Lac Blades Synchronized Skating Team. It was quite the difference from when she started ice skating as an eight-year-old.
“I hated it because I fell all the time and then I learned to love it," Kassin said.
But skating in sync was something that the skater had never even heard about.
“It was something that I had never necessarily known and it’s this team of girls, you build such a bond," Kassin explained. "The dresses, the music, it was something I was never exposed to and I always wanted to try it.”
She’s done more than try; this is her fourth trip to the U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships. But the opportunity doesn’t get old.
“Probably one of the most exciting experiences in the world,” Kassin exclaimed.
She thinks The Fond du Lac Blades deserve to win this year.
“That’s why you go through the hardships for that final moment at nationals and you hope you have it and we are going to have that moment,” she added.
And even though her school doesn’t offer synchronized skating as a sport, Kassin said West Bend East is an integral part of her good fortune.
“I don’t think I would have been able to do it and succeed in it if I had not been in West Bend," she said.
Little girls following in Kassin’s skates hope to have the opportunity to succeed and compete on the world stage, but not as an individual or a pair of figure skaters, as a team. A chance one of Kassin’s coaches, Jen McMahon, expects to happen.
“ISU [International Skating Union], which is the governing body for the world competition, is looking at trying to get it into the Olympics by 2018,” said McMahon.
While that may be too far into the future for Kassin to compete, she’s already looking forward to helping future generations.
“I want to share my experience with synchro-skating with the world, everyone should know that,” she added.
But for now, Kassin and The Blades are happy with competing on the national rink. They compete on Thursday in Plymouth, Michigan.