Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Subject Was Sectionals
Ginger Jackson brought his spunk to Pacific Coast Sectionals.
The Sectional Championships took place last weekend, approximately 10 weeks before the upcoming Nationals. As always, it was good news for some and heartbreaking for many.
Junior Ladies proved to be the most contentious field this year, with the greatest depth as many of the ladies who competed on the Junior Grand Prix are competing as juniors nationally. Pacific Coast Sectionals proved to be the toughest field this year, as Mary Beth Marley moved from Mids to PCS for her pairs career. Mary Beth just missed Nationals a year ago, but came back to qualify in quite the difficult section. Sadly, Angela Wang and Leah Keiser just missed. Neither bombed completely per se, but their mistakes were enough to place them 5th and 6th respectively. Both Angela and Leah are exceptional talents with bright futures. They should not give up on their singles careers, as they surely would've made it in other sections. Rules and rules and unfortunately, dreams are crushed every year. Mids was a tough field last year.
John Nicks' Courtney Hicks has to be considered a considerable favorite for the Junior Ladies National Title after her dominating performances at Regionals and Sectionals.
Frank Carroll has had a rough 10 days as a coach. Mirai nagasu tumbled in her free skate at Cup of China, Denis Ten fell five times in his free skate at Skate America and junior sensation Leah Keiser finished just short of qualifying to Nationals. Yet, Jonathan Cassar sparked a rebirth to his career by winning Pacific Coast Sectionals. It was a welcome success for a skater who has continued to work hard, despite not being the world's most gifted jumper. Ginger Jackson fought to claim the final spot for Senior Men. Andrew Gonzales and Christopher Caluza also advanced in Senior Men.
New favorite Vanessa Lam captured gold in Senior Ladies at PCS ahead of Danielle Kahle, who will make yet another trip to Nationals. Alissa Czisny won by a substantial margin at Midwestern Sectionals.
Lauren Dinh was injured last year and missed a repeat trip to Nationals as a Novice after competing in severe pain. She came back to win Midwestern Sectionals in the Junior Ladies division. Nina Jiang has an up-and-down competition, but finished third to qualify. Katia Shpilband finished fifth, just one spot shy of qualifying as a Novice. She is someone with a beautiful body for ice dance. With her edges, footwork, presentation and body line, she should consider finding a partner within the year, as the jumps just don't look like they're ever going to be where she needs to be in order to be successful as a singles skater. Her strength lies in the footwork, spins and presentation.
Samantha Cesario defeated Melissa Bulanhagui for the Senior Ladies Title at Eastern Sectionals. Joelle Forte finished fourth in what was likely the toughest Senior Ladies field. Sadly, an untimely illness kept Christine Mozer from qualifying in Junior Ladies.
Jason Brown, Grant Hochstein, Parker Pennington and Alex Johnson advanced from Midwestern Sectionals for Senior Men, while Jason Wong, yummy Wes Campbell, Scott Dyer and Lloyd Ting advance from Easterns.
Pacific Coast Sectionals