Posted: 12:00 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014

MU aims to add titles during U.S. National Championships

By Staff

Staff Writer

Miami University’s synchronized skating teams are all chasing titles at the U.S. National Championships in Colorado Springs, Colo. this weekend.

The competition began Thursday and runs through Saturday and MU’s three teams — senior, collegiate and junior — are looking to add to their already impressive resumes.

The RedHawk senior team seeks to earn their second straight and 11th overall berth to the ISU World Championship with a top-two finish at nationals. Miami is going for the program’s fourth national crown at the senior level and first since the 2008-09 season. Miami finished fourth among a strong international field at the Mozart Cup in late January. The senior team has earned the Professional Skaters Association Award for best performance of a program at the U.S. National Championships the last two seasons.

Miami’s collegiate team is the nine-time defending national champion in search of the program’s 16th national collegiate title. The collegiate team already owns more consecutive national titles than any other program at any level of synchronized skating. The RedHawks look to seize the record for all of U.S. figure skating this year, after equaling pairs skaters’ Theresa Weld Blanchard and Nathan Niles nine straight titles from 1918, 1920-27 (there was no competition held in 1919) last season. Miami is coming off a win at the Midwestern Championships, where the RedHawks shattered their season-best score by nearly 20 points and bested their nearest competitors by more than 20 points.

The RedHawk junior team, which is coming off a fifth-place international finish at the Leon Lurje Trophy in mid-January, also looks for gold this weekend. A finish among the top three would be a first for a Miami junior team at the national championships.

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