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Archive for January, 2017

2017 U.S. Nationals: Championship Pairs (+ extra Senior Ladies/Men profiles added)

Posted by unseenskaters on January 19, 2017

Link to 2017 U.S. NATIONAL STARTING ORDERS & RESULTS PAGE (all listed start times are Central time)

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PAIRS STARTING ORDERS/RESULTS:
Final Standings (Saturday 1/21 11:00 am ET start time for FS Group 1; 2:15 pm ET for FS Group 2)

TEAM PROFILES:

Ashley Cain & Timothy LeDuc (debut)
Ages: 21 & 26; (M/D/Y) 7/22/95 & 5/4/90
Training Town: Euless, TX
Coach: Peter Cain, Darlene Cain
Choreographer: Serge Onik
SP: “I Put a Spell on You” performed by Annie Lennox
FS: “The Prayer” duet sung by Andrea Bocelli and Celine Dion
Notes: This is their first season together. A very informative interview with them was published on 1/18/17: Link to read.
Click here to visit their Official Website.

Marissa Castelli & Mervin Tran
Ages: 26 & 26; 8/20/90 & 9/22/90
Training Town: Montreal, Canada
Coach: Bruno Marcotte, Richard Gauthier, Sylvie Fullum (Montreal); Bobby Martin, Carrie Wall (Boston)
Choreographer: Julie Marcotte
SP: Fallin’ performed by Alicia Keys
FS: Medley of Journey songs, including Don’t Stop Believin’ (instrumental and vocal versions), Open Arms and Any Way You Want It
Notes: They are the 2016 U.S. bronze medalists. They teamed up in June 2014.
Click here to visit their Official Website.

Haven Denney & Brandon Frazier (return)
Ages: 21 & 224; 10/28/95 & 11/19/92
Training Town: Geneva, IL
Coach: Rockne Brubaker, Stefania Berton
Choreographer: Marina Zoueva
SP: “Don Juan est mort” (from Don Juan musical) by Felix Gray
FS: Somewhere in Time soundtrack by John Barry
Notes: They missed the 2015-16 season due to Haven’s serious knee injury/surgery. “A Divine Sport” blog published an in-depth interview with them this past fall: Link to read.

Cali Fujimoto & Nicholas Barsi-Rhyne
Ages: 25 & 25; 5/4/91 & 12/16/91
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Amanda Evora, Lyndon Johnston, Jim Peterson
Choreographer: Judy Blumberg, Amanda Evora, Jim Peterson
SP: Violin Concerto no. 1 in G minor, op. 26 III by Max Bruch
FS: Music from The King and I by Rodgers and Hammerstein
Notes: They placed 10th last year.
They have competed together since the Juvenile level (2001-2002 season) – that’s 16 years! Click here to view their lengthy competitive history listed at the end of their (outdated) profile.

Tarah Kayne & Daniel O’Shea
Ages: 23 & 25; 4/28/93 & 2/13/91
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Jim Peterson, Amanda Evora, Lyndon Johnston
Choreographer: Judy Blumberg, Jim Peterson
SP: Take Me To Church” by Hozier (debut at Nationals)
FS: A Song of India by Rimsky-Korsakov and Marche Slave by Tchaikovsky
Notes: They are the 2016 U.S. champions. They teamed up in April 2012.
Click here to visit their Official Website.

Chelsea Liu & Brian Johnson (debut)
Ages: 17 & 21; 12/31/99 & 11/5/95
Training Town: Aliso Viejo, CA
Coach: Todd Sand, Jenni Meno, Christine Fowler-Binder, John Nicks
Choreographer: Renee Roca
SP: “The Way You Make Me Feel” and “Black or White” by Michael Jackson
FS: Music from Beauty and the Beast by Alan Menken
Notes: They were unable to make their senior national debut last year due to injury.

Jessica Pfund & Joshua Santillan
Ages: 19 & 24; 1/9/98 & 2/21/92
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Lyndon Johnston
Choreographer: Lyndon Johnston, Emilie Connors
SP: “Purple Rain” by Stacy Francis and Prince
FS: “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” (from Evita) performed by Madonna
Notes: This is their second season together. Click here to visit their Official Website.
The “Ice Musings” blog featured a pre-Nationals interview with them: Link to read.

Alexandria Shaughnessy & James Morgan
Ages: 24 & 25; 9/30/92 & 1/3/92
Training Town: Boxborough, MA
Coach: Bobby Martin, Carrie Wall, Mike Cook
Choreographer: Massimo Scali, Julie Marcotte
SP: The Prophet by Gary Moore
FS: Nella Fantasia (music from The Mission) performed by Amici Forever
Notes: They were the 2012 U.S. Novice bronze medalists and placed 9th last year. They began competing together at the Intermediate level in the 2009-10 season (this is their 8th season together). Click here to view their profile page on the Skate Pairs Website.

Erika Smith & AJ Reiss
Ages: 27 & 25; 7/26/89 & 2/3/91
Training Town: Boxborough, MA
Coach: Bobby Martin, Carrie Wall, Edouard Pliner (before his passing in 2016), Dmitri Kazarlyga, Konstantin Kostin, Michael Cook
Choreographer: Julie Marcotte
SP: “Tiny Dancer” by Elton John
FS: Music from Maleficent by James Newton Howard and “Once Upon a Dream” by Lana Del Rey
Notes: This is their second year as a team after having placed 6th in their Senior debut together last year. Click here to view their profile page on the Skate Pairs Website.

Deanna Stellato & Nathan Bartholomay (debut)
Ages: 33 & 27; 6/22/83 & 5/18/89
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Jim Peterson, Amanda Evora
Choreographer: Jim Peterson
SP: Canadian Tenors medley: “Hallelujah” (composed by Leonard Cohen)
FS: Music from The Firebird by Igor Stravinsky
Notes: The Bradenton (Florida) Herald published an excellent article on 1/16/17 titled “After a 16-year retirement, Deanna Stellato returns to national figure skating stage”: Link to read.

Joy Weinberg & Maximiliano Fernandez (debut)
Ages: 20 & 21; 9/20/96 & 9/29/95
Training Town: Pembroke Pines, FL
Coach: John Zimmerman, Silvia Fontana, Jeremy Barrett, John Kerr
Choreographer: Jim Peterson
SP: “Turn to Stone” by Ingrid Michelson
FS: Music from Daphnis et Chloe by Maurice Ravel
Notes: The are the 2016 U.S. Junior champions. This is their second year together; they switched coaches earlier this season.

Jacquelyn Green & Rique Newby-Estrella (WD)
Ages: 18 & 21; 10/12/98 & 6/20/95
Training Town: Bloomfield Hills, MI
Coach: Craig Joeright, Laura Lepzinski, Matt Blackmer
Choreographer: Massimo Scali
SP: “The Essential Aerosmith” by Aerosmith
FS: Music from Unbroken by Alexandre Desplat
Notes: They were 2016 Junior 5th place and the 2015 U.S. Novice bronze medalists. They won the silver medal in their junior international debut in Riga, Latvia in Nov. 2015. This would have been their Senior debut had they not withdrawn.

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SELECT SENIOR LADIES PROFILES (senior national debuts for 4 of the 6 listed):

Tessa Hong (debut)
Age: 14; 4/24/02
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Tom Zakrajsek, Becky Calvin
Choreographer: Drew Meekins
SP: “Ave Maria” by Giulio Caccini
FS: “Caruso” by Lucio Dalla
Notes: She is the youngest competitor in this year’s field. She placed 5th at the 2016 JGP in Tallinn, Estonia. She last competed at Nationals in 2014 when she won the Intermediate national title, coached by Frank Carroll at the time.

Megan Wessenberg (debut)
Age: 18; 7/7/98
Training Town: Boston, MA
Coach: Peter Johansson, Mark Mitchell
Choreographer: Jamie Isley
SP: “I Put a Spell on You” by Jay Hawkins, performed by Annie Lennox
FS: Music from James Bond films (including “Writing’s on the Wall” and “Diamonds are Forever”) by various artists
Notes: She was the 2016 U.S. Junior bronze medalist. She placed 6th at the 2016 JGP in Ostrava CZE.

Livvy Shilling (debut)
Age: 19; 2/17/97
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Christy Krall, Damon Allen
Choreographer: Cindy Stuart (SP), Tom Dickson (FS)
SP: “L-O-V-E” by Natalie Cole
FS: Concerto for Sitar and Orchestra by Ravi Shankar and the London Symphony Orchestra; “Kamasutra” by Belladonna Plaid Tongued Devils
Notes: This is her debut at Nationals (edited to add: she finished 13th of 19). She relocated to CO from Columbus FSC in Ohio.
Local Ohio article published after Nationals (2/3/17): click here to read.

Katie McBeath
Age: 22; (M/D/Y) 12/2/94
Training Town: Cleveland, OH
Coach: Sally Tasca, Jacqueline Redenshek-Henry
Choreographer: Jacqueline Redenshek-Henry
SP: “The Prayer” by Andrea Bocelli and Katharine McPhee
FS: Music from The Mask of Zorro by James Horner
Notes: This is her third consecutive trip to Nationals at the senior level. She qualified for USFS’ International Selection Pool (ISP) for the first time in 2016.

Rebecca Peng (debut)
Age: 17; (M/D/Y) 2/9/99
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Tom Zakrajsek, Becky Calvin
Choreographer: Jamie Isley
SP: “Papa, Can You Hear Me?” by Michel Legrand
FS: Music from Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Herman Hand
Notes: She was the 2016 U.S. Junior pewter medalist. She has competed twice as a junior internationally (won Challenge Cup in The Hague in spring 2015 and made her JGP debut in Riga, Latvia in late August 2015).

Ashley Shin
Age: 19; 1/17/98
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Eddie Shipstad
Choreographer:
SP: Music from the Four Seasons by Vivaldi
FS: Spanish medley
Notes: She was the 2014 U.S. Junior bronze medalist and the 2012 Intermediate champion when she was based in Dallas, Texas. This is her second trip to Nationals as a senior. She won the Junior silver medal at 2014 Gardena Spring Trophy (her international debut) and competed senior at the 2014 U.S. International Classic (7th).

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SELECT SENIOR MEN PROFILES:

Scott Dyer
Age: 25; 3/26/91
Training Town: El Segundo, CA
Coach: Frank Carroll
Choreographer: Lori Nichol, Nathan Birch
SP: “Adios Nonino” by Astor Piazzolla; “La Cumparsita” by Gerardo Matos Rodriguez
FS: Love Theme from Cinema Paradiso by Ennio Morricone
Notes: This is is 5th trip to Nationals at the senior level with his highest finish being 10th in 2012. He graduated from the University of Southern California in 2014 with a B.A. in International Relations/Global Business. He was the 2010 U.S. Junior pewter medalist and two-time U.S. Novice pewter medalist (2006 & 2007). He has competed once internationally, winning Novice gold at 2006 Triglav Trophy in Slovenia.

Daniel Kulenkamp
Age: 21; (M/D/Y) 8/6/95
Training Town: Scottsdale, AZ
Coach: Patrick Brault
Choreographer: Patrick Brault, Douglas Razzano, Doug Ladret
SP: “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz
FS: “Feeling Good” performed by Michael Buble
Notes: This is his 2nd consecutive trip to U.S. Nationals at the senior level (10th in 2016). He made his international debut in the Junior Grand Prix in Zagreb, Croatia in Sept. 2014. He is enrolled in Barrett, the Honors College at Arizona State University. Click here to view his official website.

Jimmy Ma
Age: 21; (M/D/Y) 10/11/95
Training Town: Hackensack, NJ
Coach: Hongyun Liu
Choreographer: Nikolai Morozov
SP: Eminem medley (incl. “The Real Slim Shady”)
FS: Piano Concerto no. 2 by Sergei Rachmaninoff
Notes: This is his 3rd consecutive trip to Nationals at the senior level. He was the 2014 U.S. Junior bronze medalist, 2013 Junior pewter medalist, and has competed twice on the Junior Grand Prix (2014 in Nagoya JPN and 2013 in Riga, Latvia).

Oleksiy Melnyk (debut)
Age: 19; (M/D/Y) 9/3/97
Training Town: Reston, VA
Coach: Traci Coleman
Choreographer: Tommy Steenberg
SP: “Blues in the Night” from Ocean’s Eleven soundtrack by Quincy Jones
FS: James Bond theme and “Thunderball” performed by Tom Jones
Notes: He placed 5th in Junior at 2016 U.S. Nationals. He was born in Kiev, Ukraine and has competed twice on the Junior Grand Prix (2016 in St. Gervais, France and 2015 in Linz, Austria).

Jordan Moeller
Age: 21; 4/24/95
Training Town: Monument, CO
Coach: Kori Ade, Rohene Ward
Choreographer: Rohene Ward, Jordan Moeller
SP: “We’re So Far Away” by Mae
FS: Music from Romeo + Juliet (1996 film soundtrack) by Nellee Hooper
Notes: This is his second Nationals at the senior level after having won the Junior silver in 2014. He missed 2016 Nationals due to a broken leg and ankle injury that required surgery in late December 2015. He has organized a fundraiser show called “One Skate At A Time” for the past 5 years and a 6th show is planned for April 2017. Click here to view his official website.

Shotaro Omori
Age: 21; 10/23/95
Training Town: Burbank, CA
Coach: Wendy Olson, Amy Evidente
Choreographer: Cindy Stuart, Jamie Isley
SP: “Invierno Porteno” by Astor Piazzolla
FS: Music from Phantom of the Opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber
Notes: This is his 3rd consecutive trip to Nationals at the senior level. He was the 2013 U.S. Junior silver medalist and World Junior bronze medalist.
Personal YouTube channel: “Shades of Sho”

Sebastien Payannet
Age: 22; (M/D/Y) 3/8/94
Training Town: Lakewood, CA
Coach: Lou Anne Petersen Conant, Rafael Arutunian
Choreographer: Marie-Jose Payannet, Sebastien Payannet, Alex Johnson
SP: “The Great Gig in the Sky” by Pink Floyd
FS: Piano Concerto no. 1 by Tchaikovsky; “Dumky” piano trio by Dvorak
Notes: This is his 3rd consecutive trip to Nationals at the senior level. He graduated in 2016 from the University of Colorado with a degree in Architectural Engineering and began a full-time job at an architectural lighting design firm in Los Angeles.
Interview: click here to read.

Dennis Phan
Age: 31; (M/D/Y) 9/8/85
Training Town: Newark, DE/Birmingham, AL
Coach: Doug Mattis
Choreographer: Doug Mattis, Dennis Phan
SP: “Just Be” by Calum Scott
FS: “All I Ask/Believe” by Brian Justin Crum
Notes: His most recent Nationals was back in 2010 and he did not enter qualifying competition from 2011 through 2015. He was the 2003 U.S. Junior champion and won the Junior Grand Prix Final in December 2004. He competed 3 times as a senior internationally (2005 Skate America, 2006 Karl Schaefer Memorial, 2008 Nebelhorn Trophy).
Interview: click here to read.

Emmanuel Savary
Age: 19; (M/D/Y) 1/6/98
Training Town: Newark, DE
Coach: Jeff DiGregorio, Pamela Gregory
Choreographer: Evgeni Platov
SP: “Viejo Aires” by Ensamble Nuevo Tango
FS: Music from The House of Flying Daggers and Fearless soundtracks by Shigeru Umebayashi, and the Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon soundtrack by Tan Dun
Notes: This is his second Nationals at the senior level. He was the 2010 U.S. Novice silver medalist, has competed twice on the Junior Grand Prix (2016 in Japan and 2011 in Latvia) and won the Junior gold at Triglav Trophy in the spring of 2016.

Postscript: Three other men debuted in senior with Melnyk:
Andrew Torgashev (age 15; click to view his official website);
Kevin Shum (age 19; click to view his self-designed website);
and Tomoki Hiwatashi (turned 17 during Nationals; click to view his Team USA profile).

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2017 U.S. Nationals: Junior Ladies

Posted by unseenskaters on January 18, 2017

RESULTS:
Junior Ladies final standings/FS results/protocols

GOLD – Kaitlyn Nguyen, Los Angeles FSC 57.80 (3) 112.36 (1) 170.16
SILVER – Starr Andrews, Los Angeles FSC 57.83 (2) 97.31 (3) 155.14
BRONZE – Ashley Lin, Dallas FSC 52.38 (5) 100.96 (2) 153.34
PEWTER – Emmy Ma, SC of Boston 60.31 (1) 89.57 (5) 149.88

5 Alexia Paganini, SC of New York 52.90 (4) 94.70 (4) 147.60
6 Nina Ouellette, St. Moritz ISC 49.65 (7) 86.60 (6) 136.25
7 Maxine Marie Bautista, DuPage FSC 52.37 (6) 81.60 (9) 133.97
8 Elizaveta Kulik, Glacier Falls FSC 48.36 (8) 84.15 (7) 132.51
9 Brynne McIsaac, Washington FSC 44.84 (9) 82.67 (8) 127.51
10 Madalyn Moree, Starlight Ice Dance Club 42.76 (11) 66.13 (10) 108.89
11 Haley Beavers, Washington FSC 44.29 (10) 64.43 (12) 108.72
12 Shannon Porter, Broadmoor SC 42.60 (12) 65.34 (11) 107.94

Junior Ladies SP results/protocols
Top 6 after SP:
1 Emmy Ma, SC of Boston 60.31 – 3Lo, 3Lz+2T, 2A; highest PCS
2 Starr Andrews, Los Angeles FSC 57.83 – 3T+3T, 3Lo, 2A
3 Kaitlyn Nguyen, Los Angeles FSC 57.80 – 3Lz+3T, 3Lo, 2A; highest TES
4 Alexia Paganini, SC of New York 52.90 – 2Lz+3T, 3Lo, 2A
5 Ashley Lin, Dallas FSC 52.38 – 2A, 3T+3T<<, 3Lo
6 Maxine Marie Bautista, DuPage FSC 52.37 – 3T+3T, 3Lo(-), 2A fall

EVENT ARTICLES & PHOTOS:
Junior Ladies SP recap article by Troy Schwindt for IceNetwork

Magnificent Ma holds advantage after ladies short
No one was happier to see Emmy Ma put it all together and win the junior ladies short program on Wednesday night at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Kansas City than her coach, Mark Mitchell.
Ma, who turns 16 on Thursday, has struggled the past three seasons with her confidence. She failed to make it out of sectionals in each of those three campaigns (in the novice category), and has also battled injury.
“Today, everything came to fruition,” said Mitchell, who coaches Ma with Peter Johansson at their school near Boston. “Her confidence is back, and she’s grown up physically. It was great to see.”
Ma, who opened the junior ladies slate, delivered a clean and impactful program to Camille Saint-Saëns’ “Mon cœur s’ouvre à ta voix.” She landed a triple loop and a triple lutz-double loop combination, and executed two Level 4 spins.
Second at the Eastern Sectionals this year, Ma put up a personal-best score of 60.31 and leads her closest competitor by 2.48 points entering Friday’s free skate.
“She skated like she practices every day,” Mitchell said. “Our whole goal was to trust her body, trust her training — and she did. I think she is strong in all of her elements, and it was good to see her get the GOEs (Grades of Execution) and good components. For me, Emmy skates far beyond her years, and this program really showcases her skating.”
Starr Andrews earned a second-place finish with her entertaining routine to Henry Mancini’s “Dream Chaser,” and stands well in contention as she prepares for the free skate. The program is a carryover from last season, but it was revamped by coach and choreographer Derrick Delmore to highlight Andrews’ maturity in the junior ranks.
Andrews — who trains in Southern California at rinks in Lakewood, Riverside and Torrance — landed an opening triple toe loop-triple toe loop combination and a triple loop, and executed three Level 4 spins. Her performance and score of 57.83 points was a marked improvement over her sixth-place finish last year in the novice ranks.
“She was a little disappointed after the season was over last year and wanted to make sure she was ready to challenge for the junior title this year,” Delmore said. “She has a lot more self-discipline, has matured and is coming into her own. As coaches, we couldn’t have asked for more tonight. She executed the program exactly like we wanted her to.”
Kaitlyn Nguyen returned to her childhood home state and delivered a solid program to place third with 57.80 points. Nguyen was born near St. Louis but moved to Colorado when she was 6 years old. Within the last few months, she’s moved to California, where she trains under coaches Ivan Dinev and Angela Nikodinov.
For her short program — which was set to Vivaldi’s The Four Seasons — Nguyen delivered on an opening triple lutz-triple toe loop that generated 11.20 points. She also landed a triple loop and a double axel, and had two Level 4 spins.
“I was most satisfied that I performed a clean program, landed all of my jumps and had fun,” she said.
Nikodinov called her pupil a very hard worker.
“She was prepared for this competition and did fantastic today,” Nikodinov said.
Alexia Paganini sits fourth heading into the free skate with a score of 52.90.

Junior Ladies FS photo gallery
Junior Ladies FS recap article by Mimi McKinnis for IceNetwork

Nguyen rallies from third to win junior ladies title
This time last year, Kaitlyn Nguyen was watching the novice ladies event at the 2016 U.S. Figure Skating Championships. Although she qualified for the competition by way of a silver medal at the Midwestern Sectionals, the 13-year-old had to withdraw because of a fever.
This year, not only did she compete at the U.S. championships but she was crowned junior ladies champion in Kansas City on Friday.
“I’m excited to just be competing this year,” Nguyen said. “I didn’t have any placement in mind when I got here — I just wanted to skate and compete two clean programs. That’s exactly what I did.”
Heading into Friday’s free skate in third place, Nguyen rallied with a flawless performance to music from Chess to win the title by more than 15 points. She opened her program with the highest-scoring element of the event: a triple lutz-half loop-triple salchow worth 11.40 points. Finishing the segment with 112.36 points and the week with 170.16, the Missouri native credited her coaches, Ivan Dinev and Angela Nikodinov, with whom she began working last spring, for the gold medal-winning performance.
“I’m really happy with my skates, and I couldn’t have done this without my amazing coaches,” Nguyen said. “I wasn’t very far off the top after my short program and was able to do what I needed to do to win.”
Despite a third-best free skate, Starr Andrews held on for silver — her highest-ever U.S. championships finish.
“Last year I was sixth, so I’m really happy with the improvements I made,” Andrews said. “It took lots of training and determination. I really worked on everything about my skating.”
Andrews earned 97.31 points for her Black Swan free skate, which included two triples performed in the second half of the program. She did, however, pop her flip and reduce a planned triple loop to a double. The 15-year-old Californian finished with a final score of 155.14.
Ashley Lin pulled up from a fifth-best short program to take home the bronze, persevering past a hard fall on a double axel-triple toe combination in the second half of her “Sandstorm” free skate.
“It didn’t really hurt at the time, but now that I’m done, I’m definitely feeling pretty sore,” Lin said. “But it’s like the U.S. Figure Skating commercial says: We’re skaters, we get up. It wasn’t that difficult to put it behind me and end up with a medal because I knew that I had to get up and keep going.”
Lin landed six triple jumps in her performance on her way to posting the second-best free skate score in the event. She earned 100.96 points on the day, en route to a final score of 153.34.
Emmy Ma, the leader after the short program, finished in fourth place after a fall and a series of downgraded elements plagued her Phantom of the Opera free skate. She earned 89.57 in the segment and 149.88 overall.

Junior Ladies SP photo gallery

COMPETITOR PROFILES (listed from youngest to oldest):

Kaitlyn Nguyen
Age: 13; 11/14/03 *will be ISU Junior age-eligible in 2017-18 season*
Club: Los Angeles FSC
Training Town: Torrance, CA
Coach: Ivan Dinev, Angela Nikodinov
Choreographer: Anastasiya Sharenko, Derrick Delmore
SP: Music from The Four Seasons by Vivaldi (violin piece in middle?)
FS: Music from Chess by Benny Andersson
SP high score this qualifying season: 58.45 (P1)
FS high score this qualifying season: 98.68 (P2)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 157.13 (P1)
Her club competition FS known high score: 113.05 (Glacier Falls)
She made her international debut at Golden Bear in Croatia (October 2016) and won the gold medal in Adv. Novice Ladies.

Ashley Lin
Age: 13; 3/12/03
Club: Dallas FSC
Training Town: Frisco, TX
Coach: Sergey Artemov, Anya Artemova
Choreographer: Anya Artemova
SP: “Memory” from Cats by Andrew Lloyd Webber
FS: “Sandstorm” by La Bionda
SP high score this season: 57.08 (JGP); 49.93 (M2)
FS high score this qualifying season: 103.42 (M1); 97.37 (JGP)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 153.35 (M1); 154.45 (JGP)
Her club competition known high scores (FS / Total): 98.63 / 157.25 (Glacier Falls)
She is the 2016 U.S. Novice pewter medalist and debuted on the JGP this past fall (6th in Slovenia).

Ashley Kim (Withdrawn)
Age: 14; 12/14/02
Club: Dallas FSC
Training Town: Plano, TX
Coach: Aleksey Letov
Choreographer: Olga Ganicheva
SP: “I Dreamed a Dream” performed by the cast of Glee
FS: Music from The Four Seasons by Vivaldi
She was unable to compete on the JGP assignment due to injury and debuted as a junior internationally at Golden Bear in Croatia in October 2016, winning the bronze.
This would have have been her debut at the National level (Novice or higher).
She withdrew due to injury and was replaced by Madalyn Moree.

Nina Ouellette
Age: 14; 3/28/02
Club: St. Moritz ISC
Training Town: San Jose, CA
Coach: David Glynn
Choreographer: Rudy Galindo, Stephanee Grosscup
SP: “Feeling Good” by Nina Simone
FS: Charlie Chaplin medley (“Terry’s Theme” from Limelight, “Titine” “Smile”)
SP high score this qualifying season: 55.11 (P3); 46.58 (JGP)
FS high score this qualifying season: 96.40 (P3); 94.92 (JGP)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 151.51 (P3); 141.50 (JGP)
Her club competition FS known high score: 101.64 (Silicon Valley)
She was the 2015 U.S. Novice silver medalist and has competed twice on the JGP (9th in both Germany 2016 and Colorado 2015).

Alexia Paganini
Age: 15; 11/15/01
Club: SC of New York
Training Town: Hackensack, NJ
Coach: Gllberto Viadana, Michela Boschetto, Margor Krisberg
Choreographer: Michela Boschetto
SP: “On Golden Pond” by Dave Grusin
FS: “Pas de Deux” from The Nutcracker by Tchaikovsky
SP high score this qualifying season: 57.36 (E2)
FS high score this qualifying season: 101.04 (E1); 110.36 (JGP)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 158.40 (E1); 149.87 (JGP)
She is the 2016 U.S. Novice silver medalist, Gardena Spring Trophy Junior gold medalist, and debuted on the JGP this past fall (6th in France).
Link to her interview published in the Ice Musings blog

Starr Andrews
Age: 15; (M/D/Y) 6/23/01
Club: All Year FSC
Training Town: Lakewood, CA
Coach: Derrick Delmore
Choreographer: Derrick Delmore, Peter Kongkasem
SP: “The Pink Panther” by Henry Mancini and Remixed version by Dream Chaser
FS: Music from Black Swan film soundtrack by Clint Mansell
SP high score this qualifying season: 55.12 (P2); 63.27 (Golden Bear international)
FS high score this qualifying season: 101.36 (P1); 108.75 (Golden Bear international)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 156.48 (P2); 172.02 (Golden Bear international)
She was 2016 Novice 6th and debuted as a junior internationally at Golden Bear in Croatia (October 2016), winning the gold.
Link to her interview published in the Ice Musings blog
Link to an article in the New York Amsterdam News

Elizaveta Kulik
Age: 15; 6/15/01
Club: Glacier Falls FSC
Training Town: Orange County, CA
Coach: Ilia Kulik, Ekaterina Gordeeva
Choreographer: Cindy Stuart
SP: “Forbidden Love” (from Romeo & Juliet 2013 film) by Abel Korzeniowski
FS: Scheherazade by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
SP high score this qualifying season: 53.14 (P5)
FS high score this qualifying season: 91.24 (P4)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 144.38 (P4)
This is her debut at the National level.

Maxine Marie Bautista
Age: 16; 6/3/01
Club: DuPage FSC
Training Town: Glen Ellyn, IL
Coach: Alex Ouriashev, Osadolo Irowa
Choreographer: Marina Zueva, Oleg Epstein
SP: “Caravan” (Duke Ellington version) performed by Billy May
FS: “Clouds, The Mind on the (Re)Wind” and “Rain, In Your Black Eyes” by Ezio Bosso
SP high score this qualifying season: 44.00 (M6)
FS high score this qualifying season: 85.83 (UGL1)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 129.59 (UGL2)
Her club competition FS known high score: 95.18 (Southport)
This is her debut at the National level (Novice or higher). She was the 2015 U.S. Intermediate silver medalist.
Link to her interview published in the Ice Musings blog

Shannon Porter
Age: 15; 4/12/01
Club: Broadmoor SC
Training Town: Albuquerque, NM/Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Eddie Shipstad, Barb Shepperson
Choreographer: Tom Dickson
SP: “Summertime” & “It Ain’t Necessarily So” by George Gershwin
FS: “A Time For Us” (Rota’s Romeo and Juliet love theme) performed by Angele Dubeau & La Pieta
SP high score this qualifying season: 50.91 (SW1); 46.12 (M3)
FS high score this qualifying season: 92.13 (M2)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 138.25 (M3)
She was 2016 Junior 8th.
Link to a December 2015 Albuquerque Journal article on Shannon and her family

Emmy Ma
Age: 16; 1/19/01
Club: SC of Boston
Training Town: Boston
Coach: Peter Johansson, Mark Mitchell
Choreographer: Mark Mitchell, Jamie Isley
SP: “Ma couer s’ouvre a ta voix” (from Samson and Delilah) by Camille Saint-Saens
FS: Music from The Phantom of the Opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber
SP high score this qualifying season: 57.55 (E1)
FS high score this qualifying season: 99.57 (E2)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 157.12 (E2)
This is her debut at the National level (Novice or higher).

Madalyn Moree
Age: 16; 12/?/00
Club: Starlight Ice Dance Club
Training Town: Minneapolis, MN
Coach: Page Lipe
Choreographer: Kelly Smith, Caryn Kadavy
SP: “Feeling Good” performed by Lauryn Hill
FS: “Hey Now” by London Grammar
SP high score this qualifying season: 45.88 (M4)
FS high score this qualifying season: 73.68 (M5)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 119.56 (M5)
This is her debut at the National level (she replaced the injured Ashley Kim).
She is one of the rare skaters who has passed the ISI level 10 test, which means she can spin and jump in both directions.

Haley Beavers
Age: 17; 12/26/99
Club: Washington FSC
Training Town: Riverside, CA
Coach: Tammy Gambill, Ronald Ludington
Choreographer: Karen Ludington, Alexandr Kirsanov
SP: “Espana Cani” by Pascual Marquina Narro
FS: “Charms” by various artists
SP high score this qualifying season: 50.72 (E3)
FS high score this qualifying season: 85.25 (SA1)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 133.33 (E4)
Her club competition FS known high score: 87.39 (Cranberry)
She is the 2016 U.S. Novice champion and Gardena Spring Trophy Junior silver medalist. Injury prevented her from making her JGP debut this past fall.

Brynne McIsaac
Age: 17; 9/6/99
Club: Washington FSC
Training Town: Alexandria, VA
Coach: Shirley Hughes
Choreographer: Shirley Hughes, Phillip Mills, Derrick Delmore
SP: “Sabre Dance” performed by Vanessa-Mae
FS: “Espana Cani” by Pascual Marquina Narro; “Concierto de Aranjuez” by Joaquin Rodrigo
SP high score this qualifying season: 49.59 (E4); 48.36 (JGP)
FS high score this qualifying season: 88.21 (E3); 84.03 (JGP)
TOTAL high score this qualifying season: 137.80 (E3); 132.39 (JGP)
Her club competition FS known high score: 103.41 (Detroit)
Notes: She was 2016 Junior 11th and has competed twice on the JGP (8th in Russia 2016 and 4th in Spain 2015).

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2017 U.S. Nationals: Junior Men

Posted by unseenskaters on January 18, 2017

RESULTS LINKS:
Junior Men FS results/protocols

GOLD – Aleksei (Alex) Krasnozhon, Dallas FSC 66.89 (2) 144.16 (1) 211.05
SILVER – Camden Pulkinen, Broadmoor SC 73.41 (1) 124.24 (2) 197.65
BRONZE – Ryan Dunk, Baltimore FSC 57.78 (4) 114.44 (3) 172.22
PEWTER – Eric Sjoberg, Los Angeles FSC 60.73 (3) 109.88 (4) 170.61

5 Sasha Lunin, Fort Wayne ISC 56.60 (5) 104.79 (5) 161.39
6 Mathew Graham, Idaho Falls FSC 54.57 (6) 104.39 (6) 158.96
7 Peter Liu, SC of Wilmington 52.47 (8) 102.35 (7) 154.82
8 Derek Wagner, Northern Ice SC 52.85 (7) 100.40 (8) 153.25
9 Kelvin Li, Northern Ice SC 50.39 (9) 97.30 (9) 147.69
10 Daniil Shamis, All Year FSC 40.93 (11) 94.62 (10) 135.55
11 TJ Nyman, Space Coast Ice Plex FSC 41.51 (10) 89.02 (11) 130.53
WD Kendrick Weston, Salt Lake Figure Skating

iceNetwork’s Junior Men FS recap article by Mimi McKinnis for IceNetwork

In second place after the short program, Alex Krasnozhon knew he had some work to do.
The skater, who won pewter in this event in 2015 and the bronze last season, found himself 6.52 points out of first entering the day. And while his free skate performance Friday at the 2017 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships wasn’t perfect — he fell on his opening quadruple loop as well as a double axel-triple loop combination — it was more than good enough to make up the difference and earn the 16-year-old Texan the U.S. junior title.
“Last year was really difficult for me because I really came expecting to win,” Krasnozhon said. “Then, all of a sudden, I fell twice in my short program and it was all over. I came back strong in the free skate, but it wasn’t enough. Since then, I’ve realized how to calm my nerves. I had a strong season, and I went to the Junior Grand Prix Final. I learned that nationals is one competition, and it was time to win.”
Despite the two aforementioned falls, Krasnozhon won the segment by nearly 20 points. In his free skate set to “Rodeo – Four Dance Episodes: III,” the brash teen landed seven triple jumps, including two triple axels, one in combination with a triple toe loop. His technical elements score (78.88) trumped the field by more than 10 points, lifting him to a segment score of 144.16 and an overall total of 211.05 — both personal bests.
Camden Pulkinen finished second with a total score of 197.65. Although the silver represents a one-spot drop from his short program placement, the result is a marked improvement from his 11th-place finish at the 2016 U.S. Championships.
“To go from 11th to second is a big accomplishment for me,” Pulkinen said. “But more than that, placements aside, I’m so happy with how much my skating has improved. I learned triple axel, and I learned how to do triple-triple combinations. Now I’m excited to use this year as a springboard and start working on quads.”
Like Krasnozhon, Pulkinen suffered two falls during his “Sarabande Suite” free skate, but he turned in an otherwise solid effort, hitting his opening triple axel as well as two more triples in the second half of the program. He earned 124.24 for his performance en route to 197.65 total points.
Ryan Dunk moved up from fourth to take the bronze with 172.22 points. Skating a less technically difficult but deduction-free program to music from Samson and Delilah, Dunk earned an impressive 114.44 points for his outing, which included five solid triple jumps.
“I’ve been working really hard on taking one element at a time,” Dunk said. “When I heard the other scores before me, I knew I could move up and get the bronze if I just did my job. I went out there and I did it, so I’m very happy.”
Eric Sjoberg finished fourth with 170.61 points.

Krasnozhon’s FS jumps were: 4Lo<< fall, 3S, 3F, 3A+3T / 3A, 3F+2T+2Lo, 3Lz, 2A+3Lo fall (new combo for this comp.).
iceNetwork’s Junior Men SP photo gallery

Junior Men SP results/protocols
Top 5 after SP:
1 Camden Pulkinen, Broadmoor SC 73.41 – 3A(+1.57), 3Lz+3T, 3Lo; level 4 in steps & 2 spins (new personal best score)
2 Alex Krasnozhon, Dallas FSC 66.89 – 3Lo, 3A(+1.71), 3Lz fall/no combo
3 Eric Sjoberg, Los Angeles FSC 60.73 – 2A, 3F+3T, 3Lo fell out
4 Ryan Dunk, Baltimore FSC 57.78 – 3Lo, 3Lz fell out/no combo, 2A
5 Sasha Lunin, Fort Wayne ISC 56.60 – 3T+3T, 3Lo(-1), 2A

iceNetwork’s Junior Men SP recap article by Lynn Rutherford for IceNetwork

Guys like Camden Pulkinen make the long days at Colorado Springs’ World Arena a little easier for Tom Zakrajsek to take.
Each day, the Arizona native shows maturity — not to mention a touch of class — far beyond his 16 years: He never kicks the ice, he never gets down on himself, and he always applauds other skaters’ efforts.
“He’s got such a good spirit,” Zakrajsek said. “He’s just a friendly, happy-go-lucky guy. If he has a bad practice, he takes it in stride. It’s very enjoyable to work with him.”
That attitude extended to the junior men’s short program at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Wednesday. When his name was called, Pulkinen stepped onto the ice, formally shook hands with Zakrajsek and associate coach Becky Calvin, nodded his thanks — and went out to skate the best competitive routine of his life to gain a 6.52-point lead over the field.
“I think this whole sport is about respect for the ice, respect for the coaches,” Pulkinen said. “When I show respect for my coaches’ knowledge, I feel more like a student, I feel more present. And I think that goes for the ice, too — I usually don’t get that mad on the ice.”
Skating with verve and attack to a medley of Rachmaninoff piano concertos, Pulkinen soared into a big triple axel, followed by a solid triple lutz-triple toe loop combination. His steps were fleet, his spins attractive and secure. The program earned 73.41 points, a career best for the skater.
“To break 70 is tremendous,” Pulkinen said. “Last year, I never broke 60. This is my best short ever in competition.
“In practice, especially before sectionals and before my Junior Grand Prix (event), I was a little bit nervous and hesitant,” he continued. “That’s why I used to cheat the axel in the short — I wasn’t attacking. So we came to the conclusion I have to attack it, I can’t be afraid of falling — I’ve got to go for it.”
Zakrajsek emphasized that while Pulkinen was always a strong skater, his progress since moving to Colorado Springs last June has been swift.
“He learned the triple axel in a couple of months, as well as triple-triples,” the coach said. “He’s working on a quad toe, but it’s not ready for competition yet. Plus, he’s working a lot with Tom Dickson and Ben Agosto on the artistic side of his skating, developing the whole package. It’s a blessing to train someone like that.”
The favorite for the junior men’s crown, Junior Grand Prix Final qualifier Alex Krasnozhon opened his short to Chopin’s “Étude 10 No. 3” with a big triple loop and huge triple axel, but he fell on a triple lutz and failed to complete a combination. His 66.89 points mean he has ground to make up, but the 16-year-old skater — who plans a quadruple loop in his free skate — thinks he can do it.
“The whole season I’ve been doing (the lutz) clean. There’s got to be one time that you fall,” said Krasnozhon, who trains in Dallas under Peter and Darlene Cain. “I’m still very happy with my score. I secured my spot for the last warmup (group), and the short program doesn’t mean as much as the free program.”
Known for his powerful jumps, the Russian-born skater has worked to enhance his style and skating skills, which showed in his far more elegant program here.
“Last season I had a Michael Jackson (short program), but this season I decided to show a whole different side of my skating,” Krasnozhon said. “Before, I was showing my happy clown side, but at the same time, I wanted to show everybody that I’m not a clown.”
“[Alex] presented the Chopin to me, and I thought it was an interesting, different direction for him, and it’s been well-received,” Scott Brown, Krasnozhon’s choreographer, said. “If you watch in the warmup, all of his skating has elevated, even since the JGP Final. The fall on the combination was unfortunate today. We’ll see in the free.”
Last season’s novice champion, Eric Sjoberg, performed a lyrical program to Rachmaninoff’s “Trio élégiaque No. 1” that included fine spins and a solid triple flip-triple toe combination, but also a messy triple loop. (The 15-year-old does not yet have a triple axel, although one is in the works.) He earned 60.73 points, good for third place.
“I’m a little bit disappointed in it,” said Sjoberg, who trains in Rafael Arutunian’s group in Southern California. “It was OK, but it wasn’t strong. I didn’t really fight for everything. I’m happy with some things in the program, but overall, I was very tentative.”
Ryan Dunk, who also skated to “Trio élégiaque No. 1,” sits fourth with 57.78 points. Although the Baltimore skater performed his step sequence with elegance and conviction, and hit a solid triple loop, he faltered on an intended triple lutz-triple toe loop combination.

iceNetwork’s Junior Men SP photo gallery

COMPETITOR PROFILES (from youngest to oldest):

Daniil Shamis
Age: 15; (M/D/Y) 9/5/01
Club: All Year FSC
Training Town: Riverside, CA
Coach: Tammy Gambill, Ryan Berning
Choreographer: Derrick Delmore
SP: “Diga Diga Doo” by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
FS: “Fearsome Flight” by Cirque du Soleil
FS high score(s) this qualifying season: 109.04 (P4)
He was born in Moscow, Russia and is the 2015 U.S. Novice pewter medalist.

Eric Sjoberg
Age: 15; 8/22/01
Club: Los Angeles FSC
Training Town: Lakewood, CA
Coach: Rafael Arutyunyan, Nadia Kanaeva, Vera Arutyunyan, Denys Petrov
Choreographer: Nadia Kanaeva, Tom Dickson
SP: Trio Elegiaque no. 1 by Sergei Rachmaninoff
FS: “Poeta en la mar” by Vicente Amigo
FS high score(s) this season: 126.04 (P1); 117.49 (JGP)
He is the 2016 U.S. Novice champion and debuted on the JGP this past fall.

Ryan Dunk
Age 16; 10/14/00
Club: Baltimore FSC
Training Town: Abingdon, MD
Coach/Choreographer: Chris Conte
SP: Piano Concerto 3 and Trio elegiaque no. 2 by Sergei Rachmaninoff
FS: Danse Bacchanale from Act 3 of Samson et Dalila op. 47
FS high score(s) this season: 114.82 (E2)
He was the 2016 Novice 5th.

Sasha Lunin
Age: 16; 9/20/00
Club: Fort Wayne ISC
Training Town: Fort Wayne, IN
Coach/Choreographer: Alena Lunin, Alexander Lunin
SP: Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini by Rachmaninoff, performed by David Garrett
FS: Pink Floyd medley
FS high score(s) this qualifying season: 97.20 (M4)
He was the 2016 Novice 7th.

Peter Liu
Age: 16; 10/26/00
Club: SC of Wilmington
Training Town: Wilmington, DE
Coach: Viktor Pfeifer, Ronnie Biancosino
Choreographer: Irina Romanova
SP: “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You” by Frankie Valli
FS: “Make it Rain” by Ed Sheeran; “Black Betty” by Ram Jam
FS high score(s) this season: 110.36 (E3); 96.13 (JGP)
He is the 2016 U.S. Novice silver medalist and made his JGP debut this past fall.

Kendrick Weston (WD)
Age: 16; 8/21/00
Club: Salt Lake FS
Training Town: Salt Lake City, UT
Coach: Lisa Kriley
Choreographer: Olga Volozhinskaya
SP: “Still Loving You” by The Scorpions
FS: Music from Chess by Benny Andersson
FS high score(s) this qualifying season: 114.28 (P3)
He was the U.S. 2015 Novice silver medalist.

Aleksei (Alex) Krasnozhon
Age: 16; 4/11/00
Club: Dallas FSC
Training Town: Euless, TX
Coach: Peter Cain, Darlene Cain
Choreographer: Scott Brown
SP: Etude 10 No. 3 (for piano) by Frederic Chopin
FS: Selections from Rodeo (Saturday Night Waltz and Hoedown) by Aaron Copland
FS high score(s) this season: 148.50 (JGP #1), 139.20 (JGP #2); 137.37 (JGP Final)
Notes: He was born in St. Petersburg, Russia and competed there until 2013. He relocated to Texas in 2014 and is the 2016 U.S. Junior bronze medalist. He qualified for his first JGP Final (placed 5th) in December 2016 by winning JGP gold & silver this past fall.
Click here to read his IFS magazine interview that was published in November 2016.

TJ Nyman
Age: 16; 4/8/00
Club: Space Coast Ice Plex FSC
Training Town: Colorado Sptings, CO
Coach: Tom Zakrajsek, Katie Nyman
Choreographer: Drew Meekins
SP: “The Way You Make Me Feel” and “Dangerous” by Michael Jackson
FS: “Prologue,” “Transformation” and “Alive” (from Jekyll & Hyde) by Frank Wildhorn
FS high score(s) this qualifying season: 77.22 (E4)
He was the 2015 Intermediate champion.
Click here to read a Florida article about him.

Camden Pulkinen
Age: 16; 3/25/00
Club: Broadmoor SC
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Tom Zakrajsek, Becky Calvin, Drew Meekins
Choreographer: Ben Agosto, Scott Brown, Tom Dickson
SP: Piano Concerto No. 1 “Vivace” and Piano Concerto No. 2 “Moderato” by Sergei Rachmaninoff
FS: Sarabande Suite (Aeternae) by Globus
FS high score(s) this season: 114.66 (U.S. Challenge Skate), 111.25 (JGP)
He was 2016 Junior 11th. He debuted for Team USA at the 2016 Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway and on the JGP this past fall.
Click here to read his Ice Musings blog interview.

Kelvin Li
Age: 17; 8/22/99
Club: Northern Ice SC
Training Town: Buffalo Grove, IL
Coach: Alex Ouriashev
Choreographer: Valeria Masarsky
SP: “Clubbed to Death” (from The Matrix) by Rob Dougan
FS: “Portrait” by Phillip Glass
FS high score(s) this qualifying season: 105.08 (M2)
He was 2015 Novice 7th.

Derek Wagner
Age: 17; 2/24/99
Club: Northern Ice SC
Training Town: Buffalo Grove, IL
Coach: Denise Myers, Sandi Delfs
Choreographer: Cindy Stuart, Scott Brown, Shanetta Folle
SP: Halo Theme Song by William Joseph, performed by Lindsey Stirling
FS: Vangelis medley
FS high score(s) this qualifying season: 104.13 (M3)
He was the 2016 Novice 6th.

William Hubbart (WD)
Age: 18; 1/23/98
Club: Southwest Florida FSC
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Jim Peterson, Amanda Evora
Choreographer: Jim Peterson
SP: “Mr. Cellophane” by John Kander and Fred Ebb
FS: “Someone to Watch Over Me” by George and Ira Gershwin
FS high score(s) this qualifying season: 125.61 (E1)
He is the 2016 U.S. Novice pewter medalist and made his JGP debut this past fall. He also qualified here in Novice Pairs with his sister, Joanna, but they had withdraw due to his injury.

Mathew Graham
Age: 19; 8/1/97
Club: Idaho Falls FSC
Training Town: Idaho Falls, ID
Coach: Karel Kovar, Amanda Kovar
Choreographer: Alex Chang, Amanda Kovar
SP: “The Feeling Begins” by Peter Gabriel
FS: “Make it Rain” by Ed Sheeran
FS high score(s) this qualifying season: 114.79 (P1)
He won the silver at the Sept. 2016 U.S. Challenge Skate (domestic invitational).
Click here to read a 1/26/17 Idaho article about him.

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2017 U.S. Nationals: Junior Pairs

Posted by unseenskaters on January 17, 2017

RESULTS:
Junior Pairs FS results/protocols (Thu. 12 noon pm ET start time)
GOLD – Nica Digerness, Broadmoor SC / Danny Neudecker, Seattle SC 54.66 (1) 98.69 (1) 153.35
SILVER – Elli Kopmar / Jonah Barrett, Southwest Florida FSC 54.01 (2) 93.89 (2) 147.90
BRONZE – Alexandria Yao, Peninsula SC / Austin Hale, Fort Wayne ISC 53.55 (3) 91.09 (3) 144.64
PEWTER – Lindsay Weinstein, DuPage FSC / Jacob Simon, Skokie Valley SC

5 Laiken Lockley / Keenan Prochnow, DuPage FSC 47.45 (8) 88.22 (4) 135.67
6 Vanessa Chen, Peninsula SC / Eric Hartley, Queen City FSC 49.22 (5) 82.24 (7) 131.46
7 Gabriella Marvaldi / Daniel Villeneuve, SC Of Southern New Jersey 48.81 (6) 81.44 (8) 130.25
8 Emma Coppess, All Year FSC / Robert Hennings, Los Angeles FSC 46.42 (9) 82.32 (6) 128.74
9 Isabella Gamez, Los Angeles FSC / Griffin Schwab, SC of New York 47.94 (7) 79.29 (9) 127.23
10 Kate Finster, Northern Kentucky SC / Brandon Kozlowski, Atlanta FSC 44.10 (1) 73.70 (10) 117.80
11 Jillian Smart / Matthew Rounis, SC of New York 39.82 (11) 65.70 (12) 105.52
12 Hannah Klopstock, Los Angeles FSC / Daniel Arsenault, Colorado SC 34.47 (12) 67.32 (11) 101.79

Junior Pairs SP results/protocols
Top 4 after SP:
1 Nica Digerness, Broadmoor SC / Danny Neudecker, Seattle SC 54.66
2 Elli Kopmar, Southwest Florida FSC / Jonah Barrett, Southwest Florida FSC 54.01
3 Alexandria Yao, Peninsula SC / Austin Hale, Fort Wayne ISC 53.55
4 Lindsay Weinstein, DuPage FSC / Jacob Simon, Skokie Valley SC 52.48

ARTICLES & PHOTOS:
IceNetwork’s Junior Pairs FS recap article by Lynn Rutherford for IceNetwork

Nica Digerness and Danny Neudecker used a strong triple twist and superior skating skills to overcome falls on two throw triple jumps and win the junior pairs title at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Thursday.
The Colorado Springs-based skaters, who train in Dalilah Sappenfield’s group at the Broadmoor World Arena, performed an elegant and mature free skate to Franz Liszt’s “Liebesträume” that also featured side-by-side double axels, dramatic lifts and an effective closing sequence including Digerness’ spread eagle into a death spiral, transitioning into a Level 4 closing spin. They won the free skate with 98.69 points and claimed gold with 153.35 points.
“The choreography felt the best we’ve ever skated it,” Neudecker, 20, said. “Of all of our run-throughs, this felt the best in terms of expression.”
“I was trying to fight for every point, trying to sell it and perform it as best I could,” Digerness, 16, said. “By the end, I was on autopilot, doing what I always do in practice.”
Sappenfield chalked up Digerness’ falls on the throw triple salchow and throw triple loop to a bit of inexperience.
“She did beautiful throws in the warmup,” the coach said, “but this was the first time we put two triple throws in the program, and I think she was thinking so much about not missing them that she missed them. Those are actually pretty easy throws for her now.”
The win is especially sweet, since Digerness and Neudecker didn’t even know if they would skate at the junior level this season.
“They wanted to move up to junior, and I said, ‘You are going to have to really work to do that,'” Sappenfield said. “They said they were ready to work. So we competed at the Broadmoor (Open) and then Skate Detroit, they did well, and I said OK.”
“We had kind of a slow start. Then we got into it more and more, and progressed,” Neudecker said. “After Detroit, we got assigned to the Russian Junior Grand Prix, and that was that.”
After claiming gold in the intermediate and novice ranks the past two seasons, Elli Kopmar and Jonah Barrett won silver here with a whimsical, cleanly skated routine to “Flying” from James Newton Howard’s Peter Pan that included two throw triples, side-by-side double axels and a solid Level 4 combination spin. The performance earned 93.89 points, and they finished with 147.90 points total.
“I really like this program. I like playing Tinkerbell — I’m all about the sparkles,” Kopmar, 13, said. “It was very fun for me to do it.”
“We put a lot of emphasis on performing our characters,” Barrett, 19, said. “It was a strong performance. We skated close to the potential we could, but we’re already talking about next season and our new plans.”
Jim Peterson, who coaches the pair in Ellenton, Florida, thinks the skaters are exceptionally easy to train.
“For me, they’re very easy and rewarding, because at young ages, they are both open to any artistic and choreographic direction,” Peterson said. “It was a really easy character portrayal for both of them.”
Skating to a romantic medley including John Barry’s “Somewhere in Time,” Indiana-based Alexandria Yao and Austin Hale hit a fine Level 3 triple twist as well as elegant lifts. Yao fell on a double axel, but the team placed third in the free skate and won bronze with 144.64 points.
“This is only our second competition together (after Pacific Coast Sectionals), so I’m happy with how we did,” Hale said. “We just got the twist a month ago.”
“We’ve only skated together for four months, which isn’t much time to get the basics down, and the elements, too,” Yao said. “I’m happy with what we tried, especially the twist.”
Another Colorado Springs team, Lindsey Weinstein and Jacob Simon, were fourth with 137.22 points.

IceNetwork’s Junior Pairs FS photo gallery

IceNetwork’s Junior Pairs SP recap article by Lynn Rutherford for IceNetwork

Nica Digerness and Danny Neudecker performed a smooth and stylish short program to Khachaturian’s Spartacus to eke out a 0.65-point lead over Elli Kopmar and Jonah Barrett in the junior pairs short program Tuesday night at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Kansas City, Missouri.
The Colorado Springs-based skaters, who train in Dalilah Sappenfield’s group at the World Arena, overcame Digerness’ fall on a double axel with other strong elements — including a solid triple twist and fine axel lasso lift — to earn 54.66 points.
“Our components were really good, and most of our elements went well,” Digerness, 16, said. “I could have checked a little harder on the landing of the double axel.”
“We’ve been working on the presentation, and that’s been our big focus, not really the elements at all,” Neudecker, 20, said. “It felt really good. We smiled through the whole program.”
Digerness and Neudecker paired up about 18 months ago, and this is their second season training in Colorado Springs. Last season, they placed seventh in novice.
“It was a personal-best program for them,” Sappenfield said. “Our goal was to get [Nica] confident with the double axel in the short; she is more confident with it in the long. She had it; she just needed to check out of it. She has to own it, because it’s not an element she misses at home. Otherwise, we were really pleased.”
Kopmar and Barrett, too, executed solid elements in their short set to exotic Middle Eastern music, including side-by-side double axels, a Level 2 triple twist and a free-flowing step sequence that saw Barrett leap into a fine split jump.
“We skated to our potential, and we kept it calm, kept it easy, and that’s all we really had to do,” Barrett, 19, said. “At the beginning of the season, the music felt so different from anything we’d ever done before and was out of our comfort zone. Now, we’ve come to love it a lot.”
The Ellenton, Florida, skaters are bidding for their third consecutive U.S. title, having won the intermediate pairs crown in 2015 and the novice title last season.
“When we first started, I didn’t dream we would be so successful, because it was just the first couple of years,” Kopmar, 13, said. “Now I feel more confident. We just try to copy and paste what we do at home, and it feels really good.”
Jim Peterson, who heads up a coaching team including Amanda Evora and Lyndon Johnston, was pleased with how his team executed some new elements.
“I was really happy because it’s the first time they’ve done the triple twist and a really solid set of double axels,” he said. “We had planned a throw triple, but we thought it was safer to do a double today, because there was so much new content they had not performed under pressure before.”
Alexandria Yao and Austin Hale performed an elegant program to a modern version of Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata,” highlighted by their well-matched lines and a lovely, free-flowing step sequence that gained Level 4 from the technical panel. They are close behind the leaders with 53.55 points.
“We tried a couple of harder elements (including triple twist and double axels), and I think we did pretty well in attempting them,” Yao, 16, said. “I’m just really happy we got to show off the program at nationals.”
“We only teamed up in August of last year,” Hale, 20, said. “We tried a few new tricks, and we did pretty well.”
Hale won junior bronze medals in 2015 and 2016 with two other partners, but he and Yao teamed up just over four months ago.
“I am so proud that they were able to put out a good program after such a short time together,” said Alena Lunin, who coaches the pair in Fort Wayne, Indianad. “[Yao] has only skated pairs for about two years.”
Lindsay Weinstein and Jacob Simon, winners of the junior silver medal last season, skated a polished short to Maxime Rodriguez’s “Eleonore” and sit fourth with 52.48 points.

IceNetwork’s Junior Pairs SP photo gallery

TEAM PROFILES:

Vanessa Chen & Eric Hartley
Ages: 16 & 18; (M/D/Y) 8/10/00 & 6/19/98
Training Town: Cincinnati, OH
Coach: Richard Hartley, Serguei Zaitsev, Kyoko Ina
Choreographer: Alena Lunin, S. Zaitsev, R. Hartley, Krzysztof Tomczak, Austin Tomczak
SP: “Earth Song” by Michael Jackson (debuted at Sectionals)
FS: “The Prayer” performed by Celine Dion and Josh Groban
Scores at Sectionals: 48.97(SP)/76.88(FS)/125.85 (P3)
JGP scores: 44.02(SP)/80.07(FS)/124.09
Notes: They are a new team and debuted on the JGP this season. He was the 2015 Novice champion with Kate Finster; she won the 2015 Novice pewter medal with Robert Przepioski.

Emma Coppess & Robert Hennings
Ages: 14 & 20; 5/5/02 & 10/9/96
Training Town: Artesia, CA
Coach/Choreographer: Peter Oppegard
SP: “Fearsome Flight” by Cirque du Soleil
FS: “Silent Film Piano Adventure Theme” by Craig Riley
Scores at Sectionals: 45.32(SP)/80.90(FS)/126.22 (P2)
Notes: They are the 2016 Novice pewter medalists. She also competed in the Novice Ladies event here, finishing 10th.

Nica Digerness & Danny Neudecker
Ages: 16 & 20; 3/21/00 & 3/2/96
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Dailah Sappenfield, Drew Meekins, Larry Ibarra, Natalya Khazova, Eddie Shipstad, Ryan Jahnke
Choreographer: Drew Meekins, D. Sappenfield
SP: Adagio from Spartacus by Khachaturian
FS: “Liebestraum” by Franz Liszt
Scores at Sectionals: 54.02(SP)/86.22(FS)/140.24 (M1)
JGP high scores: 49.36/82.44/131.80
Notes: They debuted and competed twice on the JGP this fall and placed 7th in Novice last year.

Kate Finster & Brandon Kozlowski
Ages: 13 & 21; 12/14/03 & 6/21/95
Training Town: Louisville, KY
Coach: Dalilah Sappenfield (Jessica Miller in KY)
Choreographer: Robert Mauti
SP: “The Pink Panther” by Henry Mancini
FS: Music from The Great Gatsby and Lana Del Rey
Scores at Sectionals: 41.40(SP)/69.98(FS)/111.38 (E4)
Notes: They are a new team this season. She was the 2015 Novice champion with Eric Hartley; he placed 10th in Junior Pairs last year.

Isabella Gamez & Griffin Schwab
Ages: 17 & 20; 2/1/99 & 6/28/96
Training Town: Aliso Viejo, CA
Coach: Todd Sand, Jenni Meno, John Nicks
Choreographer: Phillip Mills, Christine Fowler-Binder
SP: “Black Magic Woman/Gypsy Queen” by Carlos Santana
FS: Music from The Firebird by Igor Stravinsky
Scores at Sectionals: 40.28(SP)/80.76(FS)/121.04 (P4)
Notes: They are the 2016 Novice silver medalists.

Hannah Klopstock & Daniel Arsenault
Ages: 19 & 22; 1/27/97; 6/25/94
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Dalilah Sappenfield, Larry Ibarra
Choreographer: Phillip Mills, Drew Meekins
SP: Music from Pan by John Powell
FS: Music from Titanic by James Horner
Scores at Sectionals: 25.58(SP)/49.40(FS)/74.98 (M4)
Notes: They are a new team this season.

Elli Kopmar & Jonah Barrett
Ages: 13 & 19; 11/20/03 & 1/28/97
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Jim Peterson, Lyndon Johnston, Amanda Evora
Choreographer: Jim Peterson, Lyndon Johnston
SP: “Moroccan Roll” (?) – Middle Eastern-themed music
FS: “Flying” from Peter Pan by James Newton Howard
Scores at Sectionals: 49.52(SP)/78.76(FS)/128.28 (E2)
Notes: They are the 2016 Novice champions and the 2015 Intermediate champions.

Laiken Lockley & Keenan Prochnow
Ages: 14 & 19; 7/21/02 & 12/31/97
Training Town: Geneva, IL
Coach/Choreographer: Rockne Brubaker, Stefania Berton
SP: Music from A Chorus Line by Marvin Hamlisch
FS: Music from Les Retrouvailles by Yann Tiersen
Scores at Sectionals: 42.90(SP)/80.06(FS)/122.96 (M2)
JGP scores: 46.46/82.85/129.31
Notes: They debuted on the JGP this season and placed 5th in Novice last year.

Gabriella Marvaldi & Daniel Villeneuve
Ages: 16 & 19; 11/1/00 & 7/2/97
Training Town: Mount Laurel, NJ
Coach: Rocky Marval, Isabelle Brasseur, Bruno Marcotte
Choreographer: Julie Marcotte
SP: “Feeling Good” performed by Michael Buble and Avicii
FS: Music from Les Miserables performed by Lindsey Stirling
Scores at Sectionals: 50.78(SP)/83.70(FS)/134.48 (E1)
JGP high scores: 46.85/85.42/132.27
Notes: They are a new team this season and competed twice on the JGP. Marvaldi is the daughter of Olympic and World pair skaters from the U.S. (Marval) and Canada (Brasseur). Villeneuve won the Novice Pairs bronze medal in Canada last year with his previous partner.

Jillian Smart & Matthew Rounis
Ages: 16 & 20; 3/25/00 & 5/23/96
Training Town: Boxborough, MA
Coach: Bobby Martin, Carrie Wall
Choreographer: Carrie Wall
SP: “Who Wants to Live Forever” by Queen
FS: Music from The Magnificent Seven by Elmer Bernstein
Scores at Sectionals: 40.12(SP)/63.06(FS)/103.18 (E5)
Notes: They placed 6th in Novice at Eastern Sectionals last year.
They replaced Rose/Goodpaster here.

Lindsay Weinstein & Jacob Simon
Ages: 16 & 19; 2/18/00 & 3/13/97
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Dalilah Sappenfield, Larry Ibarra, Drew Meekins
Choreographer: D. Sappenfield
SP: “Eleonore” by Maxime Rodriguez
FS: Music from Notre Dame de Paris by Riccardo Cocciante
FS & Total score at Sectionals: 41.84(SP)/59.04(FS)/100.88 (M3)
ISU personal best scores (2016 Junior Worlds): 48.75/88.83/137.58
Notes: They are the 2016 Junior silver medalists and 2015 Junior pewter medalists. They competed their third season on the JGP this past fall.

Alexandria Yao & Austin Hale
Ages: 16 & 20; 4/5/00 & 4/28/96
Training Town: Fort Wayne, IN
Coach/Choreographer: Alena Lunin
SP: “Moonlight Sonata” by Beethoven (modern version)
FS: Heart of Courage by Thomas Bergersen and Somewhere in Time by John Barry
Scores at Sectionals: 49.68(SP)/97.72(FS)/142.40 (P1)
Notes: They are a new team this season. He won Junior bronze medals at 2016 & 2015 Nationals with his two previous partners.

Sarah Rose & Joseph Goodpaster (WD)
Ages: 15 & 19; 4/9/01 & 8/21/97
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Jim Peterson, Amanda Evora, Lyndon Johnston
Choreographer: Jim Peterson
SP: “Be Our Guest” (from Beauty and the Beast) by Alan Menken
FS: Music from How to Train Your Dragon by John Powell
Total Score at Sectionals: 121.44 (E2)
ISU personal best scores (2016 Youth Olympic Games): 46.47/80.06/126.53
Notes: They are the 2015 Novice silver medalists and have competed twice on the JGP in the past 2 years. They represented Team USA at the 2016 Youth Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway, and won a gold medal in the Mixed Team event.

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2017 U.S. Nationals: Novice Pairs

Posted by unseenskaters on January 16, 2017

MEDALISTS & final standings:
GOLD – Erin Coleman / Derrick Griffin, Panthers FSC 45.58 (1) 88.86 (1) 134.44
SILVER – Ainsley Peterson, All Year FSC / Kristofer Ogren, Kansas City FSC 39.67 (2) 81.19 (2) 120.86
BRONZE – Greta Crafoord / John Crafoord, Los Angeles FSC 39.14 (3) 72.89 (3) 112.03
PEWTER – Eliana Secunda / Blake Eisenach, Rocky Mountain FSC 36.04 (4) 68.43 (5) 104.47

5 Katherina Frantz / Nicolas Frantz, SC Of Southern New Jersey 32.63 (7) 70.45 (4) 103.08
6 Jasmine Fendi / Joshua Fendi, Los Angeles FSC 34.82 (5) 66.74 (6) 101.56
7 Isabelle Goldstein / Keyton Bearinger, Detroit SC 34.11 (6) 64.86 (7) 98.97
8 Cora DeWyre / Jacob Nussle, Ice House Skating Academy 27.56 (8) 60.98 (8) 88.54
9 Lauren Ball / Scott Dudley, Detroit SC 25.94 (9) 54.25 (10) 80.19
10 Ashley Haywood, Lakewood Winter Club / Alec Schmitt, Bremerton FSC 23.90 (11) 55.53 (9) 79.43
11 Hilary Asher, Lone Star FSC / Nathan Rensing, Colonial FSC 24.06 (10) 49.59 (11) 73.65

RESULTS LINKS:
Novice Pairs FS results/protocols (Tue. 2:25 pm ET)
Novice Pairs SP results/protocols
Top 6 after SP:
1 Erin Coleman / Derrick Griffin, Panthers FSC 45.58 (sbs 2A, level 4 in 2Tw & step seq.)
2 Ainsley Peterson, All Year FSC / Kristofer Ogren, Kansas City FSC 39.67 (level 4 in lift & step seq.)
3 Greta Crafoord / John Crafoord, Los Angeles FSC 39.14 (best throw 2Lz)
4 Eliana Secunda / Blake Eisenach, Rocky Mountain FSC 36.04
5 Jasmine Fendi / Joshua Fendi, Los Angeles FSC 34.82
6 Isabelle Goldstein / Keyton Bearinger, Detroit SC 34.11

EVENT ARTICLES & PHOTOS:
IceNetwork’s Novice Pairs FS recap article by Lynn Rutherfordd for IceNetwork

Erin Coleman and Derrick Griffin performed a strong free skate Tuesday to build on their short program lead and win the novice pairs title by more than 13 points at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Kansas City.
“At nationals, you just want to put everything you’ve got out there, and that’s what we did,” Griffin, 20, said. “We didn’t want to look back and say, ‘We could have done more, we could have trained harder.'”
“It was definitely one of our better programs,” Coleman, 15, said.
The skaters, who train in Pembroke Pines, Florida, hit the hardest side-by-side jumps — double axels — and the only Level 4 double twist of the event. Skating with speed and attack to “Beethoven’s 5 Secrets,” they landed two solid double throws as well as a double flip-double toe sequence to earn 88.86 points and win gold with 134.44 total points.
Silvia Fontana choreographed the free skate with another of the team’s coaches, John Kerr.
“They liked this music and related to it,” Fontana said. “We wanted something that would emphasize their lines and flow. They both are great skaters, and I think that is why they are in this position.”
This is both skaters’ first trip to the U.S. championships, and neither had any appreciable pairs experience before they were teamed up in December 2015, they said.
“Coming in first after the short, we weren’t 100-percent sure Erin and Derrick would handle the pressure,” another of their coaches, Jeremy Barrett, said. “They were professionals and handled it very well.”
The pair will be eligible to compete on the Junior Grand Prix circuit next season.
“We’d love to get an assignment,” Griffin said. “That’s our hope.”
Ainsley Peterson and Kristofer Ogren, who train in Colorado Springs under Dalilah Sappenfield and Drew Meekins, skated a charming free to music from the The Addams Family, highlighted by solid double throws and side-by-side double flips done on the music’s crescendo. It earned 81.19 points, and their 120.86-point total earned them the silver medal.
It was a memorable moment for both, but especially for Ogren, who grew up skating in Kansas City before relocating to Colorado Springs two seasons ago.
“The support was just amazing,” he said. “It was a phenomenal feeling, so emotional.”
“Kristofer really wanted to skate well in front of his hometown club, so they were a little nervous,” Sappenfield said. “They were a little shaky on the final lift, but they got the level. We’re very happy.”
Sappenfield choreographed the program to have Peterson portray the dour Wednesday Addams, with Ogren as her brother, Pugsley. But Peterson claimed no acting was required.
“I’m not playing a character, I’m always like that,” she said. “I’m not the happiest person all the time, so it was pretty easy. It’s a good program, so I can be myself.”
“Last year at nationals Ainsley came to practice with her hair in braids, and we were all like, ‘Wow, she looks like Wednesday,’ and that’s where the idea came from,” Ogren said.
Twin siblings Greta Crafoord and John Crafoord won the bronze medal with a lively and speedy free skate to Aaron Copland’s “Rodeo.” They were the only pair to try a throw triple — a salchow — but Greta turned out of the landing. The program earned 72.89 points, and they finished with a total of 112.03.
“I like having fun programs where I can smile and enjoy it,” Crafoord said. “It makes it fun.”
“I thought it was really good today,” Greta said. “I got a little ahead of myself on the side-by-side spin, but otherwise, I don’t think we could have done too much better.”
The 16-year-olds are coached by Jenni Meno and Todd Sand in Southern California.
“The beginning of the season, their goal was to try to get to nationals, and they did,” Meno said. “They improved a ton this year. We worked on smoothing out their skating, and John was 30 pounds lighter and a foot shorter last year, so they were able to get the big lifts going.”
Eliana Secunda and Blade Eisenach, who train under George Selimos and Robyn Sudkamp in Westminster, Colorado, took fourth place with 104.47 points.

IceNetwork’s Novice Pairs FS photo gallery
IceNetwork’s Novice Pairs SP recap article by Lynn Rutherfordd for IceNetwork

Last winter, Derrick Griffin was working as a skate guard at Panthers Ice Den in Coral Springs, Florida, managing traffic as skaters glided on and off the ice.
“I was a dancer for about two years, but I never picked up any jumps,” the 20-year-old said.
Erin Coleman, 15, competed as an intermediate lady and had never tried pairs. But coaches John Zimmerman and Jeremy Barrett had an idea.
“We knew they would be a good match for each other — we just had to get them together,” Barrett said.
Last December, a tryout was held, and the two skaters have never looked back. On Monday, they stepped out to a near six-point lead after the novice pairs short program at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Kansas City.
Performing to Danny Elfman’s haunting “Ice Dance” from the Edward Scissorhands soundtrack, the unlikely duo hit the most difficult elements of the event, including side-by-side double axels, a big Level 4 twist and a solid throw double lutz. They take 45.58 points into Tuesday’s free skate.
“We can really thank John Kerr for such magnificent choreography, and just a beautiful program,” Coleman said.
“We have to give major credit to our coaches (who also include Silvia Fontana) for that double twist; they’ve worked hard to get us that,” said Griffin, whose 6’2″ height and athletic build likely helped. “It started from a little baby thing and just grew from there.”
The young pair shares the ice in Coral Springs with French champions Vanessa James and Morgan Ciprès, who moved to Florida in the summer.
“We look up to them; they inspire us every day,” Griffin said. “We see the tireless effort they put in and that just makes us want to work harder.”
“We want to get up to their level,” Coleman said.
Ainsley Peterson and Kristofer Ogren, who train in Colorado Springs under Dalilah Sappenfield and Drew Meekins, sit second with 38.67 points after a charming tango short highlighted by a strong axel lasso lift as well as superb Level 4 steps.
“We worked hard on that lift this year,” Ogren said. “We got Level 4 here; that’s the first time we’ve done that. We worked a lot on it on and off the ice, to improve consistency.”
“I think we changed the footwork about seven times,” Peterson said. “We worked on it a lot, too.”
Sappenfield, who has coached the team for two years, praised the skaters’ adaptability and motivation.
“They are able to work well together to get their styles to match, and they’re hard workers,” she said. “That’s why they’re getting the results they are getting.”
Twin siblings Greta Crafoord and John Crafoord are on the heels of Peterson and Ogren with 39.14 points.
The 16-year-olds — who train in Southern California under Jenni Meno and Todd Sand — had a solid outing to Arlen and Mercer’s upbeat classic “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive,” skating with good speed and hitting an exceptional throw double lutz. Greta lost an edge on a transition step and fell, but the team still takes a solid score into the free skate.
“I think we did really well; all of the elements were pretty clean,” Greta said. “I got a little too excited (on the step) because I knew the program was going well.”
“I thought they did all of the elements as well as they could, and I thought it was really great,” Meno said. “I know Greta is disappointed about the fall, but things happen.”
The siblings have busy schedules. Both are students at Elisa Niguel High School, where Greta runs track and John plays varsity ice hockey.
“He would probably like it known he leads the league in penalty minutes,” Sand said.
Eliana Secunda and Blade Eisenach, who train under George Selimos and Robyn Sudkamp in Westminster, Colorado, are fourth with 36.04 points.

IceNetwork’s Novice Pairs SP photo gallery

TEAM PROFILES:

Hilary Asher & Nathan Rensing
Ages: 15 & 18; (M/D/Y) 5/24/01 & 2/20/98
Training Town: Boxborough, MA
Coach: Bobby Martin, Carrie Wall
Choreographer: Sheryl Franks, Tracy Prussack Nicola
SP: “Creature de Siam” by Guy Dubuc and Marc Lessard (from Cirque du Soleil’s Kurios)
FS: “New York State of Mind” composed/performed by Billy Joel
Scores at Sectionals: 32.13(SP)/53.56(FS)/85.69 (E3)
They are a new team this season. He was 2016 Intermediate 5th.

Erin Coleman & Derrick Griffin
Ages: 15 & 20; 6/3/01 & 7/25/96
Training Town: Coral Springs, FL
Coach: Jeremy Barrett, John Zimmerman
Choreographer: John Kerr, Silvia Fontana
SP: “Ice Dance” (from Edward Scissorhands soundtrack) by Danny Elfman
FS: Medley by The Piano Guys
Scores at Sectionals: 45.11(SP)/79.40(FS)/124.51 (E1)
They are a new team this season. They have one season of ISU Junior eligibility in 2017-18.

Greta Crafoord & John Crafoord
Ages: 16 & 16; 12/28/00; 12/28/00 (twins)
Training Town: Aliso Viejo, CA
Coach: Jenni Meno, Todd Sand
Choreographer: Renee Roca, Christine Fowler-Binder
SP: “Accentuate the Positive” by Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer
FS: Music from Rodeo by Aaron Copland
Scores at Sectionals: 37.53(SP)/73.87(FS)/111.40 (P1)
They were 2015 Intermediate 5th.

Cora DeWyre & Jacob Nussle
Ages: 14 & 21; 12/14/02 & 11/19/95
Training Town: Hartland, MI
Coach: Michelle Hunt, Doug Mattis
Choreographer: Piercyn Hunt
SP: “A Dream Far Away” by Craig Riley; music from Up by Michael Giacchino; “Hey Pachuco”
FS: “Circle of Life” (from The Lion King) by Elton John and Tim Rice
Scores at Sectionals: 29.46(SP)/60.96(FS)/90.42 (M4)
They were 2016 Novice 12th as alternates: [Michigan article on their progress since last year].

Jasmine Fendi & Joshua Fendi
Ages: 14 & 14; 4/5/02; 4/5/02 (twins)
Training Town: Artesia, CA
Coach: Peter Oppegard, Derrick Delmore
Choreographer: Peter Oppegard
SP: “I Feel Good” by James Brown
FS: “Bei Mir Bist Du Shein” performed by The Andrews Sisters
Scores at Sectionals: 33.94(SP)/65.63(FS)/99.57 (P2)
They are the 2016 U.S. Intermediate champions.

Katherina Frantz & Nicolas Frantz
Ages: 15 & 17; 8/16/01; 10/13/99
Training Town: Mount Laurel, NJ
Coach: Gisele Frantz
Choreographer: Sinead Kerr, John Kerr
SP: “Fire Dance” (based on Albeniz’s “Asturias”), arranged/performed by Jennifer Thomas (piano)
High scores at club comp. (Cranberry): 31.51(SP)/65.23(FS)/96.74
FS: Music from Phantom of the Opera by Andrew Lloyd Webber
They were 2016 Novice 9th. They elected not to compete at Eastern Sectionals.

Isabelle Goldstein & Keyton Bearinger
Ages: 13 & 17; 9/1/03 & 1/20/99
Training Town: Bloomfield Hills, MI
Coach: Craig Joeright, Zuzanna (Szwed) Parchem, Gabe Woodruff
Choreographer: Zuzanna Parchem
SP: “Only Hope” by Mandy Moore
FS: “The Show Must Go On” performed by ?
Scores at Sectionals: 35.78(SP)/62.28(FS)/98.06 (M2)
They are the 2016 U.S. Intermediate pewter medalists.

Ashley Haywood & Alec Schmitt
Ages: 17 & 20; 12/14/99 & 4/15/96
Training Town: Bremerton, WA
Coach: Brenda Peterson, Steve Baker
Choreographer: Outi Francis
SP: “Apollo” by Safri Duo
FS: “Archangel” by Two Steps from Hell
Scores at Sectionals: 21.47(SP)/44.98(FS)/66.45 (P6)
They are a new team this season and alternate replacements (for Grace Knoop/Mark Sadusky who withdrew due to her injury): [Washington state article]

Ainsley Peterson & Kristofer Ogren (Kansas City FSC)
Ages: 14 & 20; 11/29/02 & 5/8/96
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Dalilah Sappenfield, Larry Ibarra
Choreographer: D. Sappenfield, Drew Meekins
SP: “La Cumparsita” by Gerardo Matos Rodriguez
FS: Music from The Addams Family by Marc Shaiman
Scores at Sectionals: 38.80(SP)/81.60(FS)/120.40 (M1)
They were 2016 Novice 8th.

Eliana Secunda & Blake Eisenach
Ages: 17 & 16; 12/19/99; 4/19/00
Training Town: Westminster, CO
Coach: George Selimos, Robyn Sudkamp
Choreographer: Robyn Sudkamp
SP: “Still Got the Blues” by Gary Moore
FS: Music by Pavlo Simtikidis (guitarist)
Scores at Sectionals: 33.26(SP)/63.76(FS)/97.02 (M3)
They are the U.S. 2016 Intermediate silver medalists.

Lauren Ball & Scott Dudley
Ages: N/A
Training Town: Bloomfield Hills, MI
Coach: Craig Joeright, Laura Lepzinski, Matthew Blackmer
SP: (fast violin piece)
FS: (modern piano & orchestra piece)
Scores at Sectionals: 29.54(SP)/46.32(FS)/75.86 (M5)
Notes: They are a new team this season and late replacements for Weatherby/Kim.
He previously competed in ice dance.

Joanna Hubbart & William Hubbart (WD)
Ages: 17 & 18; 1/25/99 & 1/23/98
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Jim Peterson, Amanda Evora
Choreographer: Jim Peterson
SP: Music from Riverdance by Bill Whelan
FS: “Rhapsody in Blue” by George Gershwin
Scores at Sectionals: 39.62(SP)/73.26(FS)/112.88 (E2)
They were the 2015 Intermediate bronze medalists. They have withdrawn from Nationals two years in a row due to injury (her in 2016, him in 2017).

Maxine Weatherby & Jonathan Kim (WD)
Ages: 15 & 19; 4/7/01 & 6/10/97
Training Town: Coral Springs, FL
Coach: John Zimmerman, Jeremy Barrett
Choreographer: John Kerr, Silvia Fontana
SP: “A Whole New World” (from Aladdin) by Alan Menken
FS: Music from The Mask of Zorro by James Horner
Scores at Sectionals: 28.72(SP)/53.97(FS)/82.69 (P4)
They are a new team this season; he was 2016 Novice 10th with his sister. They withdrew from Nationals in January 2017.

Grace Knoop & Mark Sadusky (WD)
Ages: 16 & 18; 7/28/00 & 2/19/98
Training Town: Ellenton, FL
Coach: Jim Peterson, Amanda Evora
Scores at Sectionals: 31.50(SP)/61.48(FS)/92.98 (P3)
They are a new team this season. They withdrew from Nationals in December 2016 due to her injury.

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2017 U.S. Nationals: Novice Men

Posted by unseenskaters on January 16, 2017

2017 MEDALISTS & final standings:
GOLD – Maxim Naumov, Charter Oak FSC 55.82 (1) 122.03 (1) 177.85
SILVER – Joseph Kang, University of Delaware FSC 52.04 (2) 114.55 (2) 166.59
BRONZE – Dinh Tran, SC of San Francisco 51.98 (3) 97.43 (6) 149.41
PEWTER – Joonsoo Kim, DuPage FSC 47.60 (5) 100.35 (4) 147.95

5 Lucas Altieri, Panthers FSC 47.50 (6) 98.76 (5) 146.26
6 Paul Yeung, All Year FSC 43.77 (9) 100.61 (3) 144.38
7 Jordan Evans, University of Delaware FSC 48.35 (4) 91.03 (9) 139.38
8 Patrick Frohling, All Year FSC 42.28 (12) 93.48 (7) 135.76
9 Jonathan Yang, St. Paul FSC 42.81 (11) 92.81 (8) 135.62
10 Alan Wong, Dallas FSC 43.15 (10) 85.88 (10) 129.03
11 Alex Wellman, Central Illinois FSC 47.36 (7) 79.88 (12) 127.24
12 Max Wang, Glacier Falls FSC 44.53 (8) 80.08 (11) 124.61

RESULTS LINKS:
Novice Men FS results/protocolsNovice Men SP results/protocols
Top 6 after SP:
1 Maxim Naumov, Charter Oak FSC 55.82 (3Lz+2T, 3F, 2A; level 4 spins & footwork)
2 Joseph Kang, University of Delaware FSC 52.04 (3Lz+2T, 3Lo(-1.4), 2A)
3 Dinh Tran, SC of San Francisco 51.98 (3Lz+2T, 3F, 2A)
4 Jordan Evans, University of Delaware FSC 48.35 (3T, 3Lz+2T, 2A)
5 Joonsoo Kim, DuPage FSC 47.60 (2A, 3Lz+2T, 3F< fall; level 4 spins & footwork)
6 Lucas Altieri, Panthers FSC 47.50 (3S+3T(-1.4), 3Lo, 2A; level 4 spins & footwork)

EVENT ARTICLES & PHOTOS:
IceNetwork’s Novice Men FS recap article by Mimi McKinnis for IceNetwork

“I’m speechless. I don’t really know what to say. I can’t believe it.”
When Maxim Naumov looked at his free skate protocols, his excitement was obvious. Although five skaters remained in the novice men’s free skate at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, he had amassed enough points — 177.85 to be exact — to ensure he had done his job: win his first U.S. title.
Bringing a 3.78-point lead into Tuesday’s free skate, Naumov persevered through a shaky opening triple lutz-double toe combination to execute an otherwise clean performance, netting 122.03 points for his “Spanish Flame” program.
“Before I even skated today, I woke up and I thought, ‘This is it. Today is going to be the day,'” Naumov said. “I knew what I had to do, and I had my mind made up. When something happens, you have to leave it behind you because you can’t change it. After the lutz combination, that’s what I did. I just kept going and did what I had to do.”
In all, Naumov completed seven triple jumps, four of which were in combination or part of a series, to win the title by more than 11 points.
Joseph Kang and Dinh Tran also maintained their placements after the short program, rounding out the top three with 166.59 and 149.41 points, respectively. Kang, the 2016 U.S. intermediate champion, fought for every element in his Carmina Burana free skate, ending up with a segment score of 114.55 and the silver medal.
“I stumbled on the landing of the triple toe and put a hand down on the triple sal, so the double toe after that didn’t go too well. The toes got me going all over,” Kang said. “But I think I did well, especially for moving up a level, and it feels good knowing I can still walk away a silver medalist, even with a skate as imperfect as this.”
Tran struggled in his Jesus Christ Superstar routine, popping his opening lutz to a single and falling on a triple flip to place sixth in the segment. But a strong short program and the third-highest program components score of the free skate (44.56) kept him solidly in third place over pewter medalist Joonsoo Kim.
“I think I was too nervous going into that first lutz,” Tran said. “But I’ve been working a lot on being able to recover, and I’m much better at fighting for the rest of the program than I was last season. I reminded myself that what’s done is done and there’s nothing to do but move forward to what I knew I could do. I believed in myself.”
Kim pulled up from a fifth-best short program to finish fourth overall with 147.95 points.

IceNetwork’s Novice Men FS photo gallery
IceNetwork’s Novice Men SP recap article by Mimi McKinnis for IceNetwork

Maxim Naumov held off Joseph Kang and Dinh Tran for the top spot in the novice men’s short program at the 2017 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Monday afternoon at the Silverstein Eye Centers Arena in Independence, Missouri.
Naumov came back from a number of setbacks after being crowned U.S. novice bronze medalist in 2016. Instead of hitting the ground running toward his next qualifying season, Naumov spent the first half of 2016 adjusting to a substantial difference in stature.
“The first six months after nationals, I wasn’t doing too well,” Naumov said. “I was growing a lot and had some problems and pains as a result, so the whole first half of the year was really slow. I had to adjust.
“Once all that was behind me, I really picked up the pace and trained hard to win here,” he continued. “I’ve trained so hard, and I’m committed to this. I’m really ready to do my best here, and I’m happy with my first skate.”
With a look of graceful determination, Naumov gave a clean performance that received only one negative Grade of Execution. He landed a triple lutz-double toe, triple flip and double axel during his short to “Maybe I Maybe You” by Scorpions, and he was the only skater in the top four to earn a Level 4 on his spins and step sequence. He sits solidly in first place with 55.82 points.
“I’m relieved,” Naumov said. “I’ve had a rough time. In the hard times, you’re never quite sure what’s going to happen. You have to pick yourself back up, and that’s what I did. Now I have to keep my mental focus and stay in this place through the free skate.”
Kang also experienced a growth spurt in the offseason, not only in terms of height but also in his level of skating. As the 2016 U.S. intermediate champion, he felt pressure to stay at the top of his game.
“It’s been difficult because I have these expectations now,” Kang said. “I want to keep building on my success, but it’s also a cool experience to go after a new level, see how far you can push yourself and how much you can improve. For me, other than my long program being a minute longer, it’s not that much different. I think if you tell yourself it’s not that big of a deal, you can make that transition more smoothly.”
A shaky triple loop in his Henry V short threatened to place Kang lower than second, but the Delaware skater’s program components helped him edge Tran by just 0.06 points. He heads into Tuesday’s free skate with 52.04 points.
Just one year after failing to qualify for the U.S. championships in his first novice season, Tran, the 2015 U.S. intermediate silver medalist, is thrilled to round out the top three.
“This year I really pushed myself to work on my components and my spins, in particular, and I really think I’ve improved a lot,” Tran said. “To be where I am after the short program definitely helps give me confidence again. I’ve been taking my training seriously and not fooling around as much. Now I’m going to keep it up and just take things one element at a time.”
Tran amassed a technical element score of 29.89 for his “Tango Amore” short, the second highest of the event.
Jordan Evans sits fourth with 48.35 points.

IceNetwork’s Novice Men SP photo gallery

COMPETITOR PROFILES (listed by age, youngest to oldest):

Joseph Kang
Age: 13; 8/31/03
Club: University of Delaware FSC
Training Town: Newark, DE
Coach: Pam Gregory, Anne Militano
Choreographer: Sasha Kirsanov, Anne Militano
SP: Music from Henry V film soundtrack by Patrick Doyle
FS: Carmina Burana by Carl Orff
FS score at E Sectional: 102.42
He is the 2016 U.S. Intermediate champion.

Lucas Altieri
Age: 15; 8/15/01
Club: Panthers SC
Training Town: Coral Springs, FL
Coach: Laura Pizzelanti
Choreographer: Silvia Fontana
SP: “Incantation” from Cirque du Soleil
FS: “Heart of Courage” and “To Glory” by Two Steps From Hell
FS score at E Sectional: 88.39
He is the 2016 U.S. Intermediate pewter medalist.

Maxim Naumov
Age: 15; 8/1/01
Club: Charter Oak FSC
Training Town: Simsbury, CT
Coach: Vadim Naumov, Vladimir Petrenko
Choreographer: Mathew Gates, Evgenia Shishkova
SP: “Maybe I Maybe You” by Scorpions, performed by Klaus Meine
FS: “Spanish Flame” by Maxime Rodriguez
FS score at E Sectional: 87.17
He is the 2016 U.S. Novice bronze medalist and Gardena Spring Trophy Adv. Novice gold medalist in his Team USA debut in April 2016.
He is the son of the 1994 World pairs champions Shishkova/Naumov: [Link to Article]

Jonathan Yang
Age: 15; 6/26/01
Club: St. Paul FSC
Training Town: St. Paul, MN
Coach: Melissa Jasperson, Benjamin Miller Reisman
Choreographer: Jamie Isley
SP: “Still Loving You” by Scorpions
FS: Charlie Chaplin medley
FS score at M Sectional: 90.34
He was 2016 Intermediate 5th.

Dinh Tran
Age: 15; 6/21/01
Club: SC of San Francisco
Training Town: San Francisco, CA
Coach: Jeff Crandell, Lisa Kriley
Choreographer: Luois Vachon, Marina Klimova
SP: “Tango Amore” by Edvin Marton
FS: Music from Jesus Christ Superstar by Andrew Lloyd Webber
FS score at P Sectional: 98.59
He was the 2015 U.S. Intermediate silver medalist.

Jordan Evans
Age: 15; 4/1/01
Club: University of Delaware FSC
Training Town: Newark, DE
Coach: Jeff DiGregorio, Pam Gregory
Choreographer: Karen Ludington
SP: “Smile” performed by Nat King Cole
FS: “Tango Amore” by Edvin Marton
FS score at E Sectional: 76.96
He is the 2016 U.S. Intermediate bronze medalist.

Luke Ferrante (WD)
Age: 16; 9/1/00
Club: SC of Huntsville
Training Town: Huntsville, AL
Coach: Editha Dotson-Bowser
Choreographer: Editha Dotson-Bowser
SP: “Tango Por Una Cabeza” by Carlos Gardel, performed by Ithzak Perlman
FS: “Your Song” (from Moulin Rouge) performed by Ewan McGregor
FS score at M Sectional: 86.97

Joonsoo Kim
Age 16; 3/12/00
Club: DuPage FSC
Training Town: Darien, IL
Coach: Debbie Stoery
Choreographer: Scott Brown
SP: Pavane Op. 50 by Gabriel Faure
FS: Warsaw Concerto by Richard Addinsell, performed by Philip Fowke
FS score at M Sectional: 99.06

Alex Wellman
Age: 16; 1/26/00
Club: Central Illinois FSC
Training Town: Bloomington, IL
Coach/Choreographer: Madalyn Brook
SP: Music from Schindler’s List by John Williams, performed by Ithzak Perlman
FS: Music from Les Miserables and Miss Saigon by Claude-Michel Schonberg and Alain Boublil
FS score at M Sectional: 89.44
He is the 2016 U.S. Intermediate silver medalist.
[Link to his Ice Musings blog interview]

Paul Yeung
Age: 17; 10/1/99
Club: All Year FSC
Training Town: Simi Valley, CA
Coach: Brianna Weissmann, Bianca Marro
Choreographer: Brianna Weissmann
SP: “Bring Him Home” from Les Miserables by Claude-Michel Schonberg
FS: Medley by Queen incl. Bohemian Rhapsody with vocals
FS score at P Sectional: 108.84
He was 2016 Novice 10th.
He is the 2017 U.S. Intermediate Pairs pewter medalist with Altice Sollazo.

Max Wang
Age: 17; 5/6/99
Club: Glacier Falls FSC
Training Town: Anaheim, CA
Coach: Alyssa Hatfield, Christopher Pottenger
Choreographer: Alyssa Hatfield, Marina Mikoultchik
SP: “Runaway Baby” by Bruno Mars
FS: “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” by Aerosmith
FS score at P Sectional: 83.07
He was 2016 Intermediate 6th.

Patrick Frohling
Age: 18; 10/29/98
Club: All Year FSC
Training Town: Burbank, CA
Coach: Wendy Olson, Amy Evidente
Choreographer: Jamie Isley, Larisa Ge
SP: “Roundtable Rival” performed by Lindsey Stirling
FS: Romeo + Juliet (1996 film soundtrack) by Craig Armstrong & “Kissing You” by Des’ree and Tim Atack
FS score at P Sectional: 94.67

Alan Wong
Age: N/A
Club: Dallas FSC
Coach: Sergey Artemov?
SP: Blues guitar piece
FS: Concierto de Aranjuez by Joaquin Rodrigo
FS score at M Sectional: 80.72
He was the 2015 U.S. Intermediate bronze medalist.
(He replaced Luke Ferrante as the first alternate from Midwestern Sectionals.)

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2017 U.S. Nationals: Novice Ladies

Posted by unseenskaters on January 16, 2017

2017 MEDALISTS & final standings:
GOLD – Angelina Huang, St. Peters FSA 48.66 (2) 94.53 (2) 143.19
SILVER – Ting Cui, Baltimore FSC (3) 47.63 95.05 (1) 142.68
BRONZE – Pooja Kalyan, Ozark FSC 47.35 (5) 84.42 (4) 131.77
PEWTER – Alysa Liu, St. Moritz ISC 48.89 (1) 82.79 (6) 131.68

5 Alyssa Rich, Dallas FSC 47.47 (4) 83.42 (5) 130.89
6 Hanna Harrell, Dallas FSC 39.24 (10) 87.45 (3) 126.69
7 Isabella Miller, Salt Lake Figure Skating 43.26 (8) 78.19 (7) 121.45
8 Ilana Sherman, SC of New York 45.16 (6) 72.56 (9) 117.72
9 Audrey Shin, SC of New York 40.12 (9) 75.80 (8) 115.92
10 Emma Coppess, All Year FSC 43.44 (7) 67.35 (10) 110.79
11 Lily Sun, Peninsula SC 36.48 (12) 65.89 (11) 102.37
12 Analise Gonzalez, SC of Boston 37.71 (11) 59.74 (12) 97.45

RESULTS LINKS:
Novice Ladies FS results/protocols
Novice Ladies SP results/protocols
Top 6 after SP:
1 Alysa Liu, St. Moritz ISC 48.89 (3Lz+3T<, 3F(!), 2A); highest TES
2 Angelina Huang, St. Peters FSA 48.66 (3F+2T, 3Lz, 2A); highest PCS
3 Ting Cui, Baltimore FSC 47.63 (2A, 3T+3T<, 3S)
4 Alyssa Rich, Dallas FSC 47.47 (2A, 3Lz, 3T+2T)
5 Pooja Kalyan, Ozark FSC 47.35 (3F+2T, 3Lz(-1.6), 2A)
6 Ilana Sherman, SC of New York 45.16 (3S+2T, 3Lo, 2A)

EVENT ARTICLES & PHOTOS:
IceNetwork’s Novice Ladies FS recap article by Lynn Rutherford for IceNetwork

Angelina Huang and Ting Cui outpaced the rest of a tough novice ladies field at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Tuesday, lifting them to the gold and silver medals, respectively.
The big-jumping Huang, who trains at the Colorado Springs World Arena, hit six triples in her free skate to music from Kung Fu Panda 3, choreographed by Massimo Scali and Catarina Lindgren. The tally included triple lutz and triple salchow done in sequence, plus another triple lutz and two triple flips. She earned 94.53 points en route to placing second in the free skate and winning the title with 143.19 points.
“I’ve really been working on getting my jumps solid,” Huang, 14, said. “The bonus-point rule really encourages us to try new things.”
U.S. Figure Skating awards bonus points for novice skaters’ triple-triple combinations as well as for each different triple jump, including under-rotated or imperfectly landed attempts.
“For the triple lutz-triple salchow combination, I thought, ‘I have nothing to lose, let’s try it at nationals,'” Huang said. “I stayed on my feet and rotated the jumps, so I’m pretty happy with that.”
Huang hails from St. Louis, Missouri, where she was trained by Kelsey Himmel (née Drewel), winner of the novice title in 2001. Himmel joined Huang’s primary coach, Damon Allen, at the boards in Kansas City.
“Putting two great programs together is tough, and no better time to do it than nationals,” Allen said. “We had amped up the program since sectionals, back-loaded it (with triple jumps) and added a triple loop. For her to perform it so well on this stage shows what a great competitor she is.”
Huang credited much of her success to the highly competitive training environment at World Arena.
“I love skating with all the great people; it’s motivating to try to get as good as they are,” Huang said. “Watching Mirai [Nagasu] landing her triple axel is incredible. It would be great to do that someday.”
Ting Cui played the role of Dorothy in her free skate to music from The Wizard of Oz, and her expressive performance helped her gain the highest program components score (38.91 points) of the event. She won the free skate with 95.05 points and the silver medal with 142.68 points.
Cui fell on a triple lutz but hit two tough combinations — a double axel-triple toe and a double axel-triple salchow — and included three triple jumps in the second half of her program. Had she not faltered on her layback spin, which gained only a base level, she might have won the title.
“I just really love the character. I love using a lot of expressions and getting into the theatrical side of skating,” Cui, 14, said. “Wizard of Oz is my favorite movie.”
“It was a personal best, which is all you can hope for,” said Chris Conte, who coaches Cui in Baltimore, Maryland. “The sign of a strong competitor to me is when the chips are down, how do they recover? One mistake can turn into two, or three. The triple lutz has been very good for her, but when she fell on it, she just got stronger on other elements.”
Pooja Kalyan, who lives in Arkansas but trains under Alex Ouriashev and Scott Brown in the Chicago area, climbed from fifth after the short to claim the bronze medal with 131.77 points.
Kalyan included five triples in her Samson and Delilah program, choreographed by Lori Nichol. Although several of them had flawed landings, she still earned four bonus points. She closed with back-to-back superb Level 4 spins.
Like other coaches, Brown cited the exceptional quality of this season’s novice ladies field.
“This is one of the strongest novice ladies groups we’ve ever seen, and I’ve always had many novices through the years,” he said. “Think back a few years ago: You could do triple salchow and triple toe and repeat them, and stay competitive. There were six girls in this group trying triple-triples.”
Alysa Liu, the 11-year-old Californian who held a narrow led after the short program, opened her free skate to Benny Goodman’s “Sing, Sing, Sing” with two difficult triple-triple combinations but faltered on several of her jumps and did not gain the program component marks awarded the top ladies. She placed fourth with 131.68 points.

IceNetwork’s Novice Ladies FS photo gallery
IceNetwork’s Novice Ladies SP recap article by Lynn Rutherford for IceNetwork

Triple-triple combinations, triple flips and triple lutzes were flying during the novice ladies short program at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Monday, with most of the 12 entrants attempting one or more of the difficult elements.
“I think this is the best group of novices I’ve seen, ever,” veteran coach Tammy Gambill said. “They are so strong, and they are really fierce. It’s great for the U.S. to have so many young kids coming up with so much potential.”
Coaches credited this overall increase in technical difficulty to U.S. Figure Skating’s decision in May 2015 to award bonus points for novice skaters’ triple-triple combinations as well as for each different triple jump. The bonus system, which was designed to help U.S. skaters better compete with Russian and Japanese athletes on the Junior Grand Prix circuit, awards extra points if a triple jump is clean or under-rotated.
“The practices for these novice girls were amazing; there were five or six girls with triple-triples, and all five triples,” Chicago-area coach Alex Ouriashev said. “It’s a really big improvement. The American girls are getting very strong.”
Alysa Liu, a diminutive 11-year-old powerhouse, led the talented pack after hitting a triple lutz-triple toe combination out of a split jump as well as a triple flip in her energetic “Puttin’ on the Ritz” short. Her 48.89 points gave her a 1.22-point lead, but the top five skaters stand only about a point and a half apart entering the free skate.
The program is familiar: Liu used it last year to become the youngest-ever winner of the intermediate title.
“I’ve been through three short programs this season trying to find one that really fit me, and so we decided to just go back to it,” the exuberant youngster said. “And it worked. Of course, we added much harder jumps.”
The second jump of Liu’s triple-triple combination was deemed under-rotated, but she thinks she can improve on it in Tuesday’s free skate.
“I feel like I can do a bit better, because at sectionals I also under-rotated in the short program, but in the long program, I got it clean,” she said. “I just need to work on it more.”
Laura Lipetsky, who coaches Liu in Oakland, California, thinks triple-triple combinations are required to win a novice medal this season.
“She went out there and did what we’ve been practicing all season,” Lipetsky said. “You have to be competitive, so we went for the triple-triple. She has two triple-triples, including a triple flip-half loop-triple salchow, planned for the free skate.”
Colorado Springs-based Angelina Huang sits second after landing a triple flip-double toe and a triple lutz in her short to jazzy music from the Who Framed Roger Rabbit soundtrack, choreographed by Massimo Scali and Catarina Lindgren.
“It’s been a while since I’ve done a clean short and so I’m pretty happy,” Huang, 14, said. “I picked this music because I wanted to get the audience and the judges engaged, and show my personality.”
“She has been running clean short programs daily,” Huang’s coach, Damon Allen, said. “She’s done the hard work and that helped her feel confident when she took the ice. We’ve really worked on polishing the program, to get that components mark a bit higher.”
Allen, too, credits the bonus system with encouraging young skaters to develop tougher jumps.
“I really feel like some of our novices are stronger than our juniors at the moment,” Allen said. “I think it will really help us field a stronger (Junior Grand Prix) team in the future.”
Ting Cui, who trains in Baltimore, Maryland, under Chris Conte, is in third place with 47.63 points. She included a triple toe-triple toe in her short to the majestic “Yellow River Concerto,” although her second jump was judged under-rotated.
“I really like skating to ‘Yellow River Concerto’ because I can really feel the music throughout the program,” Cui said. “I like how big the music is and how mature it feels.”
Credit Alyssa Rich with good timing: The 13-year-old hit her first triple lutz ever in competition in her short to “Colors of the Wind.” She sits fourth with 47.47 points.
“That’s a brand new jump for her,” said Ann Brumbaugh, who coaches the skater with Ben Shroats in Dallas, Texas. “We wanted to push the envelope. This is the first generation of the jump bonus, and we’re seeing what it’s done for juveniles through novices. This is the toughest group of novices I’ve ever seen. Competing here is something to be proud of, for sure.”

IceNetwork’s Novice Ladies SP photo gallery

COMPETITOR PROFILES (listed by age, youngest to oldest):

Alysa Liu
Age: 11; 8/8/05
Club: St Moritz ISC
Training Town: Oakland, CA
Coach: Laura Lipetsky
Choreographer: Justin Dillon
SP: “Puttin’ on the Ritz” by Irving Berlin
FS: “Sing Sing Sing” by Louis Prima
SP jumps: 3Lz+3T<, 3F(!), 2A
FS score at P Sectional: 98.68 (7 triples attempted: 3Lz+3T, 3F-half loop-3S, 3Lo<, 3Lz, 3F+2T, 2A)
She is the 2016 U.S. Intermediate champion.
Her coach placed 9th in Senior Ladies at 1995 U.S. Nationals.

Lily Sun
Age: 12; 4/12/04
Club: Peninsula SC
Training Town: San Jose, CA
Coach: Phillip Mills, Igor Samohin, Sherri Krahne-Thomas
Choreographer: Justin Dillon, Olga Volozhinskaya
SP: “Liebestraum” by Franz Liszt
FS: Faust by Charles Gounod; “Danse Macabre” by Camille Saint-Saens
SP jumps: 3Lo< fall, 3T fell out/no combo, 2A
FS score at P Sectional: 83.94 (5 triples attempted through 3Lo)
She was the 2014 U.S. Intermediate bronze medalist.

Audrey Shin
Age: 12; 3/12/04
Club: SC of New York
Hometown: Northport, NY
Training Town: Lakewood, CA
Coach: Rafael Arutunian, Nadia Kanaeva, Vera Arutunian, Mary Lynn Gelderman
Choreographer: Inese Bucevica, Adam Rippon
SP: “Nella Fantasia” by Celtic Woman; music from The Mission performed by John Williams
FS: Variations from Giselle (ballet) by Adolphe Adam
SP jumps: 3Lz<+3T<, 3F< fall, 2A<
FS score at E Sectional: 95.51 (6 triples attempted, including 2 3Lz & 3F);
82.51 in FS at Golden Bear
She placed 5th in Novice at Eastern Sectionals last year.
She made her Team USA novice international debut at Golden Bear in Croatia and won the silver medal (October 2016).

Hanna Harrell
Age: 13; 9/26/03
Club: Dallas FSC
Training Town: Plano, TX
Coach: Aleksey Letov, Olga Ganicheva
Choreographer: Olga Ganicheva
SP: “Conga” performed by Gloria Estefan
FS: Music from Carmen by Georges Bizet
SP jumps: 3F fell out/no combo, 3Lz< fall, 2A
FS score at M Sectional: 88.38 (5 triples attempted, including 2 3Lz & 3F)
She is the 2016 U.S. Juvenile silver medalist (skipped the Intermediate level).

Alyssa Rich
Age: 13; 7/7/03
Club: Dallas FSC
Training Town: McKinney, TX
Coach: Ann Brumbaugh, Ben Shroats
Choreographer: Ann Brumbaugh
SP: “Colors of the Wind” performed by Tori Kelly
FS: “The Rose” performed by Bianca Ryan
SP jumps: 2A, 3Lz (landed first attempt in comp.), 3T+2T
FS score at M Sectional: 85.96 (5 triples attempted, incl. 3F)
She is the 2016 U.S. Intermediate bronze medalist.

Isabella Miller
Age: 14; 12/9/02
Club: Salt Lake Figure Skating
Training Town: Salt Lake City, UT
Coach: Lisa Kriley
Choreographer: Olga Volozhinskaya
SP: “Booty Swing” by Parov Stelar
FS: “Ritornare” from Corteo by Cirque du Soleil
SP jumps: 3T+3T< fall, 3S, 2A
FS score at P Sectional: 96.29 (5 triples attempted through 3Lo)
She was 2016 Intermediate 8th and the 2015 U.S. Juvenile pewter medalist.

Pooja Kalyan
Age: 14; 11/25/02
Club: Ozark FSC (Arkansas)
Training Town: Chicago
Coach: Alex Ouriashev
Choreographer: Scott Brown, Lori Nichol
SP: “Dreamers” performed by Sarah Brightman
FS: “Mon couer s’ouvre a ta voix” (cello/piano) from Samson and Delilah by Camille Saint-Saens
SP jumps: 3F+2T, 3Lz(-1.6), 2A
FS score at M Sectional: 99.37 (6 triples attempted incl. 2 3Lz & 3F);
81.60 at Golden Bear
She placed 9th in Novice at 2015 Nationals.
She made her Team USA novice international debut at Golden Bear in Croatia and won the bronze medal (October 2016).

Ting Cui
Age 14; 9/6/02
Club: Baltimore FSC
Training Town: Abingdon, MD
Coach/Choreographer: Chris Conte
SP: “Defend the Yellow River” performed by Lang Lang
FS: The Wizard of Oz medley for orchestra, conducted by John Williams
SP jumps: 2A, 3T+3T<, 3S
FS score at E Sectional: 86.01 (5 triples attempted, incl. 3Lz & 3F)
She was the 2015 U.S. Intermediate pewter medalist.

Angelina Huang
Age: 14; 8/4/02
Club: St. Peters FSA (Missouri)
Training Town: Colorado Springs, CO
Coach: Damon Allen, Kelsey (Drewel) Himmel
Choreographer: Massimo Scali, Catarina Lindgren
SP: Music from Who Framed Roger Rabbitt by Alan Silvestri
FS: Music from Kung Fu Panda 3 by Hans Zimmer
SP jumps: 3F+2T, 3Lz, 2A
FS score at M Sectional: 81.02; 95.56 in FS at UGL Regional (5 triples attempted, including 2 3Lz & 3F)
She is the 2016 U.S. Intermediate pewter medalist.
Her coach in Missouri won the 2001 U.S. Novice title as Kelsey Drewel and they are pictured together in [Huang’s Ice Musings blog interview].

Emma Coppess
Age: 14; 5/5/02
Club: All Year FSC
Training Town: Lakewood/Artesia, CA
Coach: Derrick Delmore, Karen Kwan-Oppegard
Choreographer: Derrick Delmore, Karen Kwan-Oppegard
SP: “Latika’s Theme” (from Slumdog Millionaire) by A.R. Rahman, performed by Suzanne D’Mello
FS: “The Heart Asks Pleasure First” (from The Piano) by Michael Nyman
SP jumps: 3Lo<+2T, 3T, 2A
FS score at P Sectional: 85.52 (5 triples attempted, incl. 3Lz & 2 3Lo)
She is also competing in the Junior Pairs event with Robert Hennings (they won the Novice Pairs pewter medal last year).

Analise Gonzalez
Age: 15; 10/18/01
Club: SC of Boston
Training Town: Revere, MA
Coach: Peter Johansson, Mark Mitchell
Choreographer: Jamie Isley
SP: “Seisouso” from Quidam performed by Audrey Brisson
FS: “Fiesta de Verte” by Elena Roger; “The Storm” by Havasi
SP jumps: 3Lz(e)+2T, 3F(!), 2A
FS score at E Sectional: 74.62 (3 triples attempted: 3Lz, 2 3S)

Ilana Sherman
Age: 15; 9/3/01
Club: SC of New York
Training Town: Riverside, CA
Coach: Tammy Gambill
Choreographer: Cindy Stuart
SP: “El Choclo” by Angel Villodo
FS: Music from Lord of the Dance by Ronan Hardiman
SP jumps: 3S+2T, 3Lo, 2A
FS score at E Sectional: 74.90 (4 triples attempted, incl. 2 3Lo)
She was 2016 Intermediate 12th.

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2017 U.S. Nationals in Kansas City: Day Two (Juvenile & Intermediate)

Posted by unseenskaters on January 15, 2017

Juvenile Dance and Intermediate events concluded in Independence, Missouri, today, Sunday, January 15, and five national champions were crowned.

LINK TO 2017 RESULTS & PROTOCOLS

Link to watch on demand videos (for IceNetwork subscribers)
IceNetwork’s Juvenile photo gallery
IceNetwork’s Sunday Intermediate photo gallery
IceNetwork’s Sunday Intermediate recap article by Troy Schwindt for IceNetwork

Ladies
Stephanie Ciarochi notched her second U.S. title in as many years, claiming the gold medal in the ladies event on Sunday afternoon in Independence, Missouri.
Ciarochi, the 2016 juvenile titlist, overcame a fall in her program to music from Michael Kamen’s Don Juan DeMarco. She finished with the second-best free skate behind Emily Zhang and the top overall score of the event with 126.54 points.
The eighth-grader, who trains at the Dr. Pepper StarCenter in Plano, Texas, fell on a triple toe loop, but bounced back instantaneously with a solid triple salchow.
Ciarochi, the short program leader, said she was nervous heading into the free skate, but was able to put those nerves behind her during the competition. She added that winning this title is great, but said her first one is still the most special.
“I’m most happy with her confidence,” coach Olga Ganicheva said. “I’m proud of how she responded after the mistake.”
The future for Ciarochi, Ganicheva said, is to continue to work on and master the triple jumps and triple-triple combinations in the novice and junior ranks.
Emily Murdock had a strong competition as well, finishing with 122.00 total points and the silver medal. She opened her free skate with a triple salchow-double toe loop and added a pair of double axels (one in combination), two Level 4 spins, and impressive footwork. Murdock matched Ciarochi for the top component score of the free skate, but Ciarochi was in a league of her own.
Ariela Masarsky won the bronze medal with 120.55 points, and landed five triple jumps. Zhang, the pewter medalist, won the free skate by completing six triple jumps — three in combination — including a triple salchow-loop-triple salchow that generated an event-best 10.52 points for a single element. She was eighth after the short program, but recorded 83.58 for her free skate.
Men’s
Sixth-grader Ilia Malinin proved once again that there isn’t a moment too big for him, as he delivered a nearly flawless and entertaining program en route to the men’s title on Sunday.
The juvenile champion in 2016, Malinin took control of the Zorro-feel “Puss in Boots” program with his opening triple salchow-double toe loop combination. He commanded the ice with three triple jumps, two double axels (one in combination), two Level 4 spins, as well as masterful footwork.
The short program leader, Malinin’s total segment score of 80.59 easily bested the field and lifted him to an overall score of 125.44, nearly 14 points clear of silver medalist Nicholas Hsieh.
“He likes to compete and loves the pressure,” said his father Roman Skorniakov, who with wife Tatiana Malinin, coaches Ilia in Reston, Virginia. “It was really hard out there but he pulled out an awesome skate.”
“He’s not just a student, but my son,” Tatiana added. “So there’s double pressure, but he doesn’t give me that much worry.”
The only negative marks on Malinin’s scoresheet came late on the landing of a triple salchow late in his program.
“He was not very confident about that jump because this morning in warm-up he didn’t do it so well,” his mother said. “It was a triple Salchow from a spread eagle and he was a little nervous about that.”
Malinin, however, put that hiccup behind him with his signature move of having two arms up on a double axel.
Hsieh, an eighth grader who started skating nearly four years ago, was equally excited about his program to a Rachmaninoff piece. He started with a triple toe loop-double toe loop combination and was rock solid the rest of the way. He also delivered the best component score of the segment.
“Nicholas is a very hard worker, very passionate,” said his coach Viktor Pfeifer said. “The main thing I like about him is the whole artistry part. He’s so interested in learning skating skills and gliding across the ice. I’m trying to develop him as a well-rounded skater with a lot of artistry.”
Philip Baker won the bronze medal by accruing 108.20 points, while Daniel Argueta secured the pewter medal with 107.46 points.
Pairs
The brother-and-sister tandem of Masha Mokhova and Ivan Mokhov rallied from second place after the short program to claim the free skate and pairs titles on Sunday afternoon.
They performed to music from a Russian ballet entitled Cipollino. Their score of 97.11 points bested short program leaders and silver medalists Jade Esposito and Franz-Peter Jerosch, who finished just off the pace with 95.61 points.
Mokhova, 10, and Mokhov, 17, are coached by their parents, Oksana Yakusheva and Andrey Mokhov, at the Suburban Ice Arena in East Lansing, Michigan. The team did not compete at sectionals, and it was the first time they had performed their free skate in competition.
“We are really excited and happy with how we did,” said Ivan, who also holds singles experience. “We were really happy that we skated clean since that was our main goal.”
Esposito and Jerosch experienced some minor mistakes in their free skate to music by recording artist Michael Bublé.
“They both went out there and fought the whole time and put 100 percent into their skate,” coach Carrie Wall said. “I think they were a little disappointed like any athlete is. They wanted to stay in position, but they gave their best effort and that’s all we can ask of them.”
Defending juvenile pairs champions Isabelle Martins and Ryan Bedard earned the bronze medal with 91.77 points, and 2015 juvenile pairs title holders Altice Sollazo and Paul Yeung grabbed the pewter medal by collecting 88.77 points.
Ice dance
Skating to music from Mary Poppins, Katarina Wolfkostin and Howard Zhao secured the ice dance title on Sunday morning. Their smooth and lively skating garnered all Level 4s, with the lone exception being a Level 3 they received for the diagonal step sequence.
The short dance leaders earned a score of 107.19 points, which proved to be 12.66 points more than silver medalists Layla Karnes and Jeffrey Chen were awarded.
“We were feeling really good after patterns,” Zhao said. “We were a little tight this morning so our practices weren’t so great, but we put that behind us and went out and did our jobs.”
The first-year team is coached by Detroit SC’s Pasquale Camerlengo, Angelika Krylova, Natalia Deller and Paul Bellantuono.
“They handled the competition well,” Camerlengo said. “They skated fiercely and without fear, which is great for this young age. I like the way they handled everything and I see a bright future on the ice for them.”
Karnes and Chen, second after the pattern dances, performed to the Blue Danube Waltz choreographed by 1984 British Olympic ice dance champion and renowned choreographer Christopher Dean.
“It was a difficult challenge to get under time and hold those positions,” Chen said of the various lifts included in the program. “It took a lot of work.”
Their coach, Christine Fowler-Binder, said the program has changed a lot since its inception, including a costume change following the sectional championships.
Paulina Brykalova and Daniel Brykalov collected the bronze medal with a total score of 89.25, and Maria Soldatova and Faddey Soldatov earned the pewter medal with 82.20 points.

Local articles:
Connecticut article on Intermediate silver medalist Emilia Murdock
Lansing, Michigan article on the Mokhov family published before Nationals (with video)
Green Bay area TV news video/article on Payton Winkler before Nationals (5th in Intermediate)

9:00 JUVENILE FREE DANCE [Link to results/protocols]
Check out Ice-Dance.com’s team profiles [click here]
JUVENILE DANCE MEDALISTS:
Gold – Nastia Efimova / Jonathan Zhao, SC of North Carolina 44.63 (1) 43.39 (1) 88.02
Silver – Alice Serbin, Colonial FSC / Kenan Slevira, All Year FSC 43.11 (2) 40.04 (3) 83.15
Bronze – Elliana Peal / Ethan Peal, Skokie Valley SC 35.81 (4) 40.44 (2) 76.25
Pewter – Sarah Dutton / Emmett King, Louisville Skating Academy 36.71 (3) 35.79 (5) 72.50

IceNetwork’s Juvenile FD recap article by Mimi McKinnis for IceNetwork

Nastia Efimova and Jonathan Zhao extended their lead and won the juvenile ice dance title by nearly five points at the 2017 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Sunday.
Performing a sassy free dance to a Latin medley that included “Mañana De Carnival” by Luis Miguel and “Salsa” by Yuri Buenaventura, the duo earned a Level 4 on four of their five elements, netting 43.39 points for the segment and 88.02 overall. The win marked an impressive improvement over the team’s seventh-place showing at last year’s event.
“We work hard, we have a good training environment, and great families and coaches that helped us get here,” Zhao said. “Overall, we were just really motivated to do better than last year.”
Family played a key role in the duo’s success. They are coached by Nastia’s mother, Natalia Efimova (along with Nathan Truesdell), and train with Efimova’s sister, Alina, who will compete with Alexander Petrov in the junior dance event Wednesday.
“I’m very proud of both of them,” Natalia said. “With both of them competing here, I’m twice as happy. We’re making great memories.”
Turning in the third-best free dance of the day, Alice Serbin and Kenan Slevira held onto the second-place standing they brought into the day and took home the silver medal. They earned a Level 4 for their twizzles, straight line lift and dance spin to collect a segment score of 40.04 and an overall mark of 83.15.
Like Efimova and Zhao, the family ties extended to Elliana Peal and Ethan Peal, who moved up from fourth after the pattern dance to grab bronze with 76.25 points. Coached by their father, Robert, the brother-sister duo notched the second-highest free dance score of the day, earning 40.44 points for their performance to music from Mary Poppins.
“Sometimes all of it can be long and exhausting, but when you win a medal in your first trip to nationals, it’s all worth it,” Ethan said. “It’s so exciting, especially since we put in so many hours. It’s great to know that it paid off here and we’re leaving with a bronze medal.”
In third place after the pattern dances, Sarah Dutton and Emmett King survived a free dance that was rated just the fifth best of the day to earn the pewter with 72.50 points.

10:30 INTERMEDIATE MEN FREE SKATE [Link to results/protocols]
INTERMEDIATE MEN MEDALISTS:
Gold – Ilia Malinin, Washington FSC 44.85 (1) 80.59 (1) 125.44
Silver – Nicholas Hsieh, SC of Wilmington 40.48 (3) 71.18 (2) 111.66
Bronze – Philip Baker, SC of Boston 39.21 (4) 68.99 (3) 108.20
Pewter – Daniel Argueta, Texas Gulf Coast FSC 41.86 (2) 65.60 (4) 107.46

12:05 INTERMEDIATE FREE DANCE [Link to results/protocols]
Check out Ice-Dance.com’s team profiles [click here]
INTERMEDIATE DANCE MEDALISTS:
Gold – Katarina Wolfkostin, Peninsula SC / Howard Zhao, Detroit SC 52.81 (1) 54.38 (1) 107.19
Silver – Layla Karnes, All Year FSC / Jeffrey Chen, Peninsula SC 46.40 (2) 48.13 (3) 94.53
Bronze – Paulina Brykalova / Daniel Brykalov, St. Paul FSC 40.50 (4) 48.75 (2) 89.25
Pewter – Maria Soldatova / Faddey Soldatov, Washington FSC 35.01 (8) 47.19 (4) 82.20

2:20 INTERMEDIATE LADIES FREE SKATE [Link to results/protocols]
INTERMEDIATE LADIES MEDALISTS:
Gold – Stephanie Ciarochi, Dallas FSC 47.55 (1) 78.99 (2) 126.54
Silver – Emilia Murdock, SC of Boston 44.04 (2) 77.96 (4) 122.00
Bronze – Ariela Masarsky, DuPage FSC 42.28 (4) 78.27 (3) 120.55
Pewter – Emily Zhang, Richmond FSC 36.24 (8) 83.58 (1) 119.82

3:55 INTERMEDIATE PAIRS FREE SKATE [Link to results/protocols]
INTERMEDIATE PAIRS MEDALISTS:
Gold – Masha Mokhova / Ivan Mokhov, Lansing SC 34.40 (2) 62.71 (1) 97.11
Silver – Jade Esposito / Franz-Peter Jerosch, Colonial FSC 34.70 (1) 60.91 (2) 95.61
Bronze – Isabelle Martins, Chicago FSC / Ryan Bedard, Northern Ice SC 31.71 (4) 60.06 (3) 91.77
Pewter – Altice Sollazo / Paul Yeung, All Year FSC 32.30 (3) 56.57 (6) 88.87

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2017 U.S. Nationals in Kansas City: Day One (Juvenile & Intermediate)

Posted by unseenskaters on January 14, 2017

The 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships kicked off with Juvenile and Intermediate level events in Independence, Missouri, on Saturday, January 14. Good Luck to All and may you each achieve your individual goals! Note: Events below are listed in competition schedule order.

LINK TO 2017 RESULTS & PROTOCOLS

Link to watch on demand videos (for IceNetwork subscribers)
IceNetwork’s Juvenile photo gallery
IceNetwork’s Saturday Intermediate photo gallery
IceNetwork’s Saturday Intermediate Short Programs recap article by Troy Schwindt for IceNetwork

Intermediate ladies
Coach Olga Ganicheva gives a direct and simple reason for why her pupil, Stephanie Ciarochi, has done so well over the past two seasons.
“She’s an amazing work machine,” said Ganicheva, who coaches Ciarochi with Aleksey Letov at the Dr. Pepper StarCenter in Plano, Texas. “She’s very determined, knows what she wants. She will not leave or stop until she reaches her goals. She takes in every word.”
Ciarochi, the 2016 U.S. juvenile champion, showed that her strong work ethic continues to pay dividends by grabbing the intermediate ladies short program lead at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Saturday night. She landed an opening triple toe loop-double toe loop combination, followed by a triple salchow and a pair of Level 4 spins. Her score of 47.55 is 3.51 points clear of Emilia Murdock, who sits in second place entering Sunday’s free skate.
“I feel more confident this year because I’ve had more time to practice and get used to my new jumps, including the triples,” Ciarochi, an eighth-grader, said.
Skating to Edvin Marton’s Fantasia, Ciarochi said she was most pleased with her footwork sequence, which received a program-best Grade of Execution (GOE) of 1.30.
Christina Lin and Ariela Masarsky are less than two points off the pace for second place.
Intermediate men’s
Ilia Malinin, the 2016 U.S. juvenile champion, performed a mistake-free and entertaining short program to take a near three-point advantage heading into Sunday’s free skate.
The sixth-grader from Woodbridge, Virginia, began his jazzy short with a triple salchow-double toe loop combination. He added a triple toe loop, double axel and a pair of Level 4 spins en route to a earning a score of 44.85 points.
“He was very comfortable with this program today, and hopefully that will stay the same for tomorrow,” said his coach and mother Tatiana Malinin, who coaches Ilia with her husband, Roman Skorniakov, in Reston, Virginia.
Ilia’s parents drive him more than one hour to Reston to skate each morning, then back home to attend school. The family is in the process of moving closer to Reston, which will improve his training situation, his mother said.
Daniel Argueta, who also executed a triple salchow-double toe loop, sits second with a score of 41.86 points. Nicholas Hsieh and Philip Baker are within striking distance of the lead as well.
Intermediate pairs
Jade Esposito and Franz-Peter Jerosch united over the summer at a pairs camp and have quickly melded together. The skaters, who competed with different partners at last year’s U.S. championships, grabbed the lead after the short program with a score of 34.70 points, less than one point clear of their closest competitors.
“Their parents are friends, and their partnerships had disbanded for different reasons,” said Carrie Wall, who coaches the team with Bobby Martin in Boxboro, Massachusetts. “They were a little apprehensive at first because they are a mirror team, meaning they rotate in different directions. Bobby and I, though, saw the potential in them, and they’ve developed so nicely.”
Not far off the lead, Masha Mokhova and Ivan Mokhov stand in second entering Sunday’s free skate with 34.40 points, while Altice Sollazo and Paul Yeung are third with 32.30 points.
Intermediate dance
Katarina Wolfkostin and Howard Zhao won both pattern dances — the European Waltz and Rocker Foxtrot — early Saturday afternoon and hold a lead of 6.41 points ahead of Sunday’s free dance.
Wolfkostin, 12, and Zhao, 14, united after the 2016 U.S. Championships in Saint Paul, Minnesota. They performed the European Waltz to “Moon River,” which was music suggested by Zhao’s good friend, 81-year-old Ralph David Owen. Their Rocker Foxtrot music was by artist Michael Bublé.
“Both dances felt smooth, and we received all of our key points,” Wolfkostin said.
“We spent the whole year just drilling it, drilling it,” Zhao said of the pattern dances. “Our coaches made us do double run-throughs back to back, so we are glad it paid off.”
Coached by Detroit Skating Club’s Angelika Krylova, Pasquale Camerlengo, Natalia Deller and Paul Bellantuono, Wolfkostin and Zhao are prepped and ready for their free dance, which will be set to music from Mary Poppins.
“We’ve been working hard on it,” Zhao said. “We have some nice transitions, and it’s a lot of fun to perform.”
Layla Karnes and Jeffrey Chen finished second in the pattern dances with 46.40 points, while Washington FSC’s Claire Cain and Andrei Davydov sit third with 41.32 points.

IceNetwork’s Saturday Juvenile events recap article by Mimi McKinnis for IceNetwork

The first medals of the 2017 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships were awarded Saturday at Silverstein Eye Centers Arena, with Madison Nguyen, William Annis, and Sydney Flaum and Chase Finster being crowned juvenile champions in the girls, boys and pairs categories, respectively.
Juvenile girls
Less than half a point separated the top four skaters, but Nguyen ultimately prevailed with a feisty and energetic performance of her tango free. She earned a technical score of 32.00 points en route to winning the girls title with a total mark of 58.95.
“I think my facial expressions make a big difference, but my technical elements set me apart today,” Nguyen said. “It was a close one, but I think I was solid, and that made a big difference.”
Nguyen led a field of strong competitors and a slew of solid performances, but she held on to the top spot with backloaded elements, as five of her seven doubles were executed in the second half of her program. She notched only three negative Grades of Execution throughout her performance.
The silver medal went to Tamnhi Huynh, who finished with 58.90 points. Huynh also earned bonus points on five of her seven double jumps, including her double axel-double toe combination. Skating to “East West Harmony” by Bijan Mortazavi, she showed flair and finesse on her way to earning the highest program components score (27.90) of the event.
Haley Scott took home the bronze, earning 58.82 points for her performance to music from The Nutcracker. Scott also completed seven double jumps, including a double axel-single loop-double loop worth a performance-high 6.90 points.
Fourth place went to Elise Freezer, who earned 58.49 points for her Star Wars-inspired performance.
Juvenile boys
Annis, who celebrated his 12th birthday Friday, easily topped the podium with a score of 58.13. He opened his program, set to music by the Gipsy Kings, with the highest-scoring element of the event: a double axel-half loop-double flip worth 7.34 points.
“When I ended my program, I was really excited because I knew I had skated well,” Annis said. “I thought I would be able to get a medal, but I wasn’t really expecting to win. I had hoped that I would because I was so happy with how I skated, so to be a national champion now is really exciting.”
Robert Yampolsky nabbed the second spot on the podium with 54.78 points. Skating to “Sikuriadas” by Incantation, he completed each of his five jumping passes in the second half of his program, earning bonus points on all seven of his doubles. He finished less than a point ahead of Kai Kovar, who earned 54.62 points for his performance to music by The Piano Guys. Despite a fall on his double lutz, Kovar earned a technical elements score of 29.92, the second highest of the day.
Liam Kapeikis finished fourth, amassing 53.46 points for his efforts.
Juvenile pairs
Flaum and Finster earned an event-best 46.64 points, made all the more impressive by the fact that their partnership is all of four months old and their hometowns are several states apart.
“We worked really hard and skated together every day we could,” Flaum said. “He lives in Kentucky and I live in Colorado, but we’ve made our time count.”
“It’s definitely really exciting to be here,” Finster added. “The short amount of time we’ve had together has definitely been exciting, and it’s great to be where we are — on top!”
The duo, who train in Colorado Springs, turned in a clean performance to “Singin’ in the Rain” that included side-by-side double lutzes and double flip-double toe combinations.
Josephine Hagan and Evan Whitlow opened their performance with difficult side-by-side, double lutz-double loop combinations. Skating to music from the soundtrack of The Mummy, they earned 45.59 points and the silver medal.
Bronze went to Jasmine Wong and Danylo Siianytsia, who turned in a solid performance worth 44.47 points. Their side-by-side and pairs spins were their highest-scoring elements, earning the pair 3.93 and 3.71 points, respectively. They finished nearly four points clear of Ashley Fletcher and Cayden McKenzie-Cook, who placed fourth with 40.57.
Juvenile pattern dance
Nastia Efimova and Jonathan Zhao lead after the first segment of juvenile ice dance, earning a combined 44.63 points for their two pattern dances. The finish marked a huge improvement for the duo, which placed seventh in juvenile dance at last year’s U.S. championships.
“The difference between last year and this year has been a lot of hard work every day,” Zhao said. “We’ve done ballet and ballroom dance, and did a lot of training off ice. We’ve done some extra classes to really push ourselves harder.”
Starting out with the highest-scoring Fourteenstep of the day, the duo took 22.87 points into their Willow Waltz performance, set to “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz. Finishing the day with 44.63 points, Efimova and Zhao head into Sunday’s free dance 1.52 points in front of Alice Serbin and Kenan Slevira.
Serbin and Slevira turned in the highest-scoring Willow Waltz of the day, earning 21.78 points for that pattern dance, en route to a combined score of 43.11. They lead Sarah Dutton and Emmett King, who round out the top three with 36.71 points.
Elliana Peal and Ethan Peal are fourth with 35.81 points.

JUVENILE DANCE Pattern Dance 1 (Fourteenstep) [Link to results/protocols]
9:40 JUVENILE DANCE Pattern Dance 2 (Willow Waltz) [Link to combined results/protocols]
Check out Ice-Dance.com’s team profiles [click here]
Top 6 after 2 Juvenile Pattern Dances:
1 Nastia Efimova / Jonathan Zhao, SC of North Carolina 22.87 (1) 21.76 (2) 44.63
2 Alice Serbin, Colonial FSC / Kenan Slevira, All Year FSC 21.33 (2) 21.78 (1) 43.11
3 Sarah Dutton / Emmett King, Louisville Skating Academy 17.26 (4) 19.45 (4) 36.71
4 Elliana Peal / Ethan Peal, Skokie Valley SC 16.04 (6) 19.77 (3) 35.81
5 Sabrina Foti, Carolinas FSC / Christian Bennett, FSC of Charlotte 17.86 (3) 15.74 (5) 33.60
6 Emily Winter / Anthony Haddad, Washington FSC 16.65 (5) 13.69 (6) 30.34

JUVENILE GIRLS Free Skate [Link to results/protocols]
Note: Triple jumps are not allowed at this level; the top skaters have two double Axels planned in their FS.
JUVENILE GIRLS MEDALISTS:
Gold – Madison Nguyen, Dallas FSC 58.95
Silver – Tamnhi Huynh, Dallas FSC 58.90
Bronze – Haley Scott, First Coast FSC 58.82
Pewter – Elise Freezer, Los Angeles FSC 58.49

INTERMEDIATE Pattern Dance 1 (European Waltz) [Link to results/protocols]
European Waltz top 5 high scorers at Sectionals:
Soldatova/Soldatov 25.27, Karnes/Chen 23.65, Cain/Davydov 23.55, Wolfkostin/Zhao 23.16, Brylakova/Brylakov 21.38

1:35 INTERMEDIATE Pattern Dance 2 (Rocker Foxtrot) [Link to combined results/protocols]
Rocker Foxtrot top 6 high scorers at Sectionals:
Soldatova/Soldatov 24.25, Cain/Davydov 21.55, Karnes/Chen 21.16, Brylakova/Brylakov 19.46, Wolfkostin/Zhao 19.08, Sebastiani/Berry 19.06

Check out Ice-Dance.com’s team profiles [click here]

Top 4 after 2 Intermediate Pattern Dances:
1 Katarina Wolfkostin, Peninsula SC / Howard Zhao, Detroit SC 26.85 (1) 25.96 (1) 52.81 (both competed with other partners at 2016 Intermediate Nationals)
2 Layla Karnes, All Year FSC / Jeffrey Chen, Peninsula SC 24.89 (2) 21.51 (2) 46.40 (2016 U.S. Juvenile champs; he is Karen’s younger brother)
3 Claire Cain / Andrei Davydov, Washington FSC 22.05 (3) 19.27 (5) 41.32 (2016 U.S. Juvenile bronze medalists)
4 Paulina Brykalova / Daniel Brykalov, St. Paul FSC 21.42 (4) 19.08 (6) 40.50 (2016 U.S. Juvenile 5th place)

Last year’s Juvenile silver medalists, Maria Soldatova/Faddey Soldatov, are currently in 8th place (35.01) due to a fall in the first PD (11th place), before coming back to finish 3rd in the 2nd PD.

JUVENILE BOYS Free Skate [Link to results/protocols]
Note: Triple jumps are not allowed at this level; the top skaters have two double Axels planned in their FS.
JUVENILE BOYS MEDALISTS:
Gold – William Annis, Yarmouth Ice Club 58.13
Silver – Robert Yampolsky, North Jersey FSC 54.78
Bronze – Kai Kovar, Wasatch FSC 54.62
Pewter – Liam Kapeikis, Wenatchee FSC 53.46

JUVENILE PAIRS Free Skate [Link to results/protocols]
JUVENILE PAIRS MEDALISTS:
Gold – Sydney Flaum, Broadmoor SC / Chase Finster, Northern Kentucky SC 46.64
Silver – Josephine Hagan / Evan Whitlow, Louisville Skating Academy 45.59
Bronze – Jasmine Wong, Dakotah FSC / Danylo Siianytsia, All Year FSC 44.47
Pewter – Ashley Fletcher / Cayden McKenzie-Cook, Orange County FSC 40.57

INTERMEDIATE MEN Short Program [Link to results/protocols]
Top 4 after Intermediate Men SP:
1 Ilia Malinin, Washington FSC 44.85 – 3S+2T, 3T, 2A, 2 L4 spins; highest TES
2 Daniel Argueta, Texas Gulf Coast FSC 41.86 – 3Lo, 3S+2T, 2A
3 Nicholas Hsieh, SC of Wilmington 40.48 – 3T+2T, 2A, 2Lz; highest PCS
4 Philip Baker, SC of Boston 39.21 – 3S combo (-1.7), 3T, 2A

INTERMEDIATE LADIES Short Program [Link to results/protocols]
Top 6 after Intermediate Ladies SP:
1 Stephanie Ciarochi, Dallas FSC 47.55 – 3T+2T, 3S, 2A, 2 L4 spins; highest TES & PCS
2 Emilia Murdock, SC of Boston 44.04 – 2A, 3S, 2F+2Lo, 2 L4 spins
3 Christina Lin, Murray Silver Blades FSC 42.42 – 2A, 3S+2T, 3T<(-1), 2 L4 spins
4 Ariela Masarsky, DuPage FSC 42.28 – 3F+2T, 3Lo<<, 2A, 2 L4 spins
5 Violeta Ushakova, SC of New York 40.39 – 2A, 3S fall, 3T+2T
6 Calista Choi, Skokie Valley SC 37.15 – 2A, 2Lz+2Lo, 2F, 2 L4 spins

INTERMEDIATE PAIRS Short Program [Link to results/protocols]
Top 5 after Intermediate Pairs SP:
1 Jade Esposito / Franz-Peter Jerosch, Colonial FSC 34.70
2 Masha Mokhova / Ivan Mokhov, Lansing SC 34.40
3 Altice Sollazo / Paul Yeung, All Year FSC 32.30
4 Isabelle Martins, Chicago FSC / Ryan Bedard, Northern Ice SC 31.71
5 Georgia Bush / Timmy Chapman, Central Florida FSC 30.97

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