Friday, March 19, 2010

Figure skaters pick it up a notch at Jackson Hole

Sun Valley kids impress at Snow King

Front row, from left, Emma Stuessi, Alex Stuessi and Arizona Semones. Back, from left, Lauren Jacobs and Alexandra Harten. Photo by

Five local skaters captured a cache of medals for the Sun Valley Figure Skating Club during the Jackson Hole Invitational March 11-14.

Drawing skaters from both the Northwest and Central Pacific figure skating regions, the Jackson Hole meet offered a higher level of competition. It was comparable to the Sun Valley Summer Championships in popularity and attendance.

Nine-year-old Alex Stuessi, a Hemmingway Elementary School student, was awarded the Stacey Findorff Trophy for excellence in skating at the Basic Skills through Non Test level, as well as representing the spirit of skating at the JHI.

Alex was chosen from a group of over 45 potential recipients. The JHI judges and officials felt Stuessi's skating skill and on-ice personality distinguished her.

The honor capped off a very successful competition for Sun Valley, with all five skaters medaling in at least one event.

Lauren Jacobs won gold in the Showcase event at the Preliminary level, as did Emma Stuessi and Arizona Semones at the Pre-Preliminary level.

Alex Stuessi won gold medals in both Showcase and Artistic events at the Non Test level.

Competing at qualifying levels under the International Judging System for the first time, Alexandra Harten won the bronze medal in the Intermediate Ladies Long Program and took fourth in the Short Program and Fourth overall in Intermediate Ladies Freeskate.

Harten also won silvers in Intermediate Showcase and Interpretive Improvisation. Emma Stuessi won bronze in Pre-Preliminary Freeskate, and Arizona Semones won bronze in Pre-Preliminary Artistic.

Primary coach Holly Wheeler accompanied the five Jackson Hole Invitational medalists from the SVFSC. Professional coach and choreographer Gia Guddat designed their programs. Here are results:

Intermediate Ladies—Alexandra Harten: Short Program—4; Long Program—3; Overall Freeskate—4; Interpretive Improv—2; and Showcase—2.

Preliminary—Lauren Jacobs: Freeskate—4; and Showcase—1.

Pre-Preliminary—Emma Stuessi: Freeskate—3; Artistic—5; and Showcase Group A—1; and Arizona Semones: Freeskate—6; Artistic—3; and Showcase Group B—1.

Non Test—Alex Stuessi: Freeskate—6; Artistic—1; and Showcase—1.

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