By Alice Tarantin
This upcoming Saturday marks the first regional competition of the season. Nearly 40 teams will gather at the Bog Ice Arena for the 18th Annual Thanksgiving Classic in Kingston, Massachusetts. The competition begins at noon with the intermediate division, which consists of six teams. Last year’s gold medalists, the Skyliners, will look for another victory. A challenge is expected from Team Delaware, as their Nationals score last year, 52.50, was less than one point higher than the Skyliners’.
Open juvenile will then take the ice, followed by junior short. The two teams in the junior division, the Synchroettes and Team Delaware, claimed the top spots at Easterns last year with scores of 134.55 and 92.89 respectively.
Up next will be the juvenile division. With seven teams competing, it is the largest group in the competition. New to this level is Team Liberty and Team Rinx. The national champions last year, the Skyliners, and national bronze medalists Mini Mates are the expected leaders for this division.
The two beginner groups will close out the first half of the competition, and awards will take place shortly after 3 o’clock. The competition will then continue with the novice division. The first-year team Chesapeake Sailors will compete against the Skyliners, Synchroettes, and Team Delaware, who placed second through fourth respectively at Easterns last year. The Skyliners proceeded to capture the bronze at Nationals with a score of 60.85. The Synchroettes landed in fourth place at nationals with 58.61 points. Team Delaware placed tenth with a score of 50.56.
The open collegiate level will have one competitor, the Liberty University Flames from Virginia. After the pre-juvenile division skates, both junior teams will compete their long program. Concluding the competition will be the preliminary division, after which the final awards ceremony will be held.