(Reuters) – Bradie Tennell virtually definitely certified for subsequent month’s Winter Olympics when she received the U.S. determine skating championships title on Friday as Mirai Nagasu achieved redemption 4 years after her Olympic dream was shattered.
Tennell carried out a close to flawless routine within the free skate in San Jose, California to extend her margin after beginning in entrance following Wednesday’s brief program.
She scored 145.72 factors to complete on 219.51. Nagasu was second on 213.84. The 18-year-old Karen Chen completed a distant third on 198.59 to probably declare the third spot on the American staff for the Pyeongchang Games.
“I think the sky’s the limit for me,” mentioned 19-year-old Tennell. “I’d been doing clean programs all season so I had a really good base.”
Ashley Wagner, whose choice for the 2014 staff was controversial, once more completed fourth however is unlikely to be chosen once more this 12 months after a poor season.
Wagner had been given the third spot within the U.S. staff in 2014, regardless of ending fourth at the nationals, which had virtually pressured Nagasu to give up the game.
The 24-year-old Nagasu, nonetheless, ignited the gang on Friday together with her athletic efficiency and burst into tears of reduction on finishing a routine that began with a triple Axel earlier than she acquired an ovation that lasted greater than a minute and embraced coach Tom Zakrajsek as she left the ice.
“Being left off the team (in 2014) has pushed me to become a stronger skater,” she had mentioned beforehand. “It was a very hard thing to accept.”
The championships proceed on Saturday as 18-year-old Nathan Chen takes an enormous lead into the lads’s free skate, whereas the husband-and-wife staff of Chris and Alexa Knierim lead heading into the pairs free skate.
Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; Editing by Greg Stutchbury