By Mary Moffat
Coach Dawn Brady took endless videos of the girls’ solos, compiled a seven-minute video for each, and their respective parents submitted an application and the fee and hoped for the best. When the Winter Classic (formerly known as the Jean Norman) Competition was over, the selections were announced and Avery Barnett and Tiana Dellaleau have been chosen for the Saskatchewan Junior Development Team. When asked what they thought about their chances of making it were, both agreed that you hope but you don’t expect it.
Avery, daughter of Melissa Barsi and Jamie Barnett, is 10 and has been skating for seven years, three with the Carlyle Skating Club, while Tiana, daughter of Anita and Paul Dellaleau, is 11 and has been skating with the CSC for seven years as well. Other skaters on the team come from all over Saskatchewan, with clubs from LaRonge, Meadow Lake, Moosomin, Regina, Saskatoon, Estevan, and Tisdale.
Being chosen as a part of this elite team means a huge commitment of time, effort and money. The girls will take part in a camp in Saskatoon in April, one in Regina in August and will be required to take part in at least two competitions.
While Avery’s parents are new to this part of skating, Anita and Paul were happy to share what the commitment will look like for their family. Tiana will take part in two weeks of summer skating school in Virden mid-July, a competition in Winnipeg, followed by the Regina Camp in August and 2 trips weekly to Estevan for seven weeks, in order to be ready for the Sask Open in Regina, before the ice in Carlyle will be ready. While Avery is excited but a little apprehensive, Tiana knows just how she feels. She says the best part of the Development Team, besides getting her Team jacket, is getting to know skaters from all over the province. Both girls are grateful for the support of their club and all of their coaches, as well as their parents and families.
While I could go on and on about the girls and their skills, you can see for yourself this Sunday Mar. 24 at 2 p.m.