February 18, 2019 at 2:09pm

Teams Elite Junior skaters are returning from Italy with the ultimate souvenir.

The Northbrook Park District synchronized skaters are the 2019 Spring Cup champions, placing first in the Junior division in Milan, Italy and taking home the cup for Team USA. Teams Elite Junior scored a total of 160.85 points, coming out ahead of Russia and Sweden, which placed second and third, respectively.

The competition took place Saturday and Sunday, with many in the Northbrook community livestreaming the event on YouTube and hosting watch parties to see their home team skate against 10 other teams from around the world.

Wearing the signature red costumes from their long program—an elegant retelling of Romeo and Juliet—Teams Elite was honored on the ice Sunday during the Spring Cup awards ceremony. Her teammates by her side, Northbrook resident Caroline Clesen, a senior at Glenbrook North High School, received the medal and trophy on behalf of the team.

“A culture of excellence has long been the hallmark of the Northbrook synchronized skating program,” said Northbrook Park District Executive Director Molly Hamer. “On behalf of the Board of Commissioners and the entire Northbrook staff, I am thrilled to congratulate our talented, hardworking skaters and our skilled and dedicated coaches for this phenomenal accomplishment.”

Founded in 1999, the Teams Elite Program includes seven teams, starting with Synchro Skills I and Preliminary up to the newly added Junior team turned Team USA champions.
Skaters first learned they might represent Team USA in November during the Diamond Classic in Mentor, Ohio—the Junior team’s first competition. The team scored high enough to be entered into US Figure Skating’s International Selection Pool.

Teams Elite Junior will next head to Plymouth, Michigan to compete in the 2019 U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships February 28–March 2.

“I am really proud of Teams Elite Junior’s presentation in Italy,” said Northbrook Park District Director of Recreation Eileen Loftus. “They demonstrated such poise and class. I had chills watching both competitions.”