Varsity figure skating team closes out successful season


Photo submitted by Jasmine Allison

On Jan. 25, varsity skaters finished out their final performance for the 2021-2022 season at the boys hockey game against East Ridge. The team had their first group of seniors graduating since 2020.

Chelsea Stahl, Social Media Editor

For most high schoolers, a Saturday morning is spent sleeping in late. This is not the case for the Stillwater varsity figure skating team. Every Saturday morning before the hour of  6 a.m. a group of 13 teenage girls enter the St. Croix Valley Recreation Center ready to give it their all. The varsity figure skating team recently finished their last hockey performance of the 2021-2022 season. Although endings mean new beginnings, some seniors are not ready to say their final goodbyes just yet.

Last season, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the team was not allowed to perform at any hockey games, however they picked up a new performance spot downtown Stillwater at the Water Street Inn. The team worked hard this season to get back into the habit of performing for a larger crowd.

The past two years we didn’t really get to perform at the hockey games,” junior Kyra Privette explained. “We did performances downtown Stillwater with a much smaller crowd. So this year, we had to really learn how to perform in front of a crowd again.”

Although the team was smaller than year’s past, the girls worked on creating a good team environment. A team should be a loving and welcoming setting, and the skaters are doing everything right to make sure that is the case. Alongside skating the girls have a lot in common, this allowed them to create a close bond with each other.

Senior captain Sophia Heidtke shared how one of the team’s main goals this year was to be one. She also explained how this year teammates are “a lot closer in age and also just in general, we all bonded and like share a lot of similarities.

Between Kyra, Sophie and Heidtke they have been skating for 42 years combined and 16 of those years have been spent on the varsity team. Countless hours, practices, competitions, and private lessons have been spent towards skating. For them, skating has been a part of their life since before they can even remember. Not only have they watched themselves and each other grow into amazing skaters but their coaches have watched them as well.

“It’s been really fun to see them grow up and especially as they’ve like grown as skaters to a lot of them have achieved some really high levels,” varsity coach Sarah Kiel said. 

Four of the 13 teammates will graduate this year. Seniors Sophie Privette, Heidtke, Nila Cooper and Grace Lipovetz will face some tough goodbyes after committing several years to the program. Not only have these girls become teammates, but they have become best friends as well. For senior captain Sophie Privette some goodbyes may be harder than others.

“The hardest thing for me will be leaving my sister,” Sophie explained. “It’ll be the first year we won’t skate together.”

It takes hard work, dedication and drive to be a part of the varsity figure skating team. Just like any other team, performing at the fullest potential is the way to succeed in that specific sport.

Kiel explained that for people interested in joining the team one needs to work on your performance skills. We do a tryout every August, but I think that basic thing is that at the end of the day, it’s it’s high performance. So you have to have the skills and the, you know, performance side of it. So work on both of those things.”

Another successful season is in the books for the varsity figure skating team.

Kyra expressed how, We really just wanted to bring our all into every performance, you know, get the audience going.