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The Gamut

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Chilling on the ice with Oxford underclassmen


Sophomore Linda Liao, freshman Kenzie Liang, and seventh grader Evelyn Truong are the face of ice skaters here at OA. The graceful, competitive, and dedicated skaters put in over 24 combined hours a week towards improving their craft and honing their skills for bigger opportunities like collegiate skating and potential careers. 

Gliding on the ice ever since she learned how to walk, Evelyn Truong calls the rink her second home as she has been skating for over 10 years and now competes at a club level for Matrix Figure Skating. In hopes of skating for Cornell University’s collegiate figure skating team one day, Truong devotes over 12 hours a week towards her potential collegiate career. Truong’s core motivation for the sport comes from her former coach. 

“She would always tell me that everything was going to be okay, just make sure to have fun and try my best, so it helped me not be so scared while skating,” Truong said.

Starting the sport at such a young age, Truong has felt the pressure of being perfect at her sport, but she understands that sometimes a reminder to just give it your all and be proud of your accomplishments regardless of any mistakes should be a set foundation for the sport mentality. 

Newest to skating, Linda Liao started her skating career a mere two years ago and since then has absolutely fallen in love with the sport. Spending at least eight hours at the rink per week, Liao loves to challenge herself to learn new skills like spins and jumps. Liao hopes to continue skating after her Oxford career but is truly focused on just having fun. However, like most extracurriculars, all highs come with their lows. Liao acknowledges her struggles with keeping her confidence during competitions and at practice. 

“My biggest struggle is overcoming mental block. Sometimes jumps can be scary and so can spins, it takes a lot of strong mentality to keep going and not give up,” Liao said.

Although sometimes fear can take over, Liao is constantly working on physical and mental strength to combat self-doubt. 

A true veteran of the ice, Kenzie Liang has been skating for nearly a decade and, when school isn’t in session, spends nearly five hours on the ice every day. This dedication comes from her competitive spirit on and off the ice as she plays competitive hockey and runs for Oxford’s cross country team. In skating, however, Liang craves the adrenaline rush that comes from doing challenging, fast-paced routines. 

“It’s an interesting and sometimes stressful experience being solo on the ice and trying to perfect a routine, but I’ve always loved it and thought it was exhilarating,” Liang said. 

Liang believes her affection for the rink will continue to live on till at least the end of high school and from there may her blades take her somewhere amazing, on or off of the ice. 

These underclassmen continue to work towards their big dreams and with the amount of dedication along with the energy they all bring to the rink, there’s no doubt these ladies will get far in the skating world.

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About the Contributor
Mikaela Woo
Mikaela Woo, Staff Writer
Mikaela Woo is a sophomore staff writer who, after a little push from her English teacher, decided to pursue her passion for writing, joining the Gamut back in 2022. She hopes to inform readers through her research and reporting, focusing on topics in A&E and Sports, which align with her deep love for softball, music, and pop culture. Possessing a bold, friendly, and dynamic personality, Mikaela is open to pretty much everyone and not shy about what she likes. She has mixed music tastes, ranging from pop girly-girl vibes to heartbreak country songs, and she often listens to artists such as Taylor Swift, Gracie Abrams, Zach Bryan, and Cody Johnson. Beyond music, readers won't be able to catch her without her phone, Diet Coke, and makeup, notably her mascara. Mikaela also enjoys the vibrant and endearingly campy nostalgia of classic 2000s teen-girl movies and shows like Mean Girls, Legally Blonde, and Gilmore Girls. In the face of a challenge, she remains persistent and resilient, always being able to handle them just in time. Mikaela’s authenticity shines through, especially in her work, so make sure to tune in! It's Mikaela’s era this year, her version.
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