Yankowskas, Coughlin lead Katz, Lynch

Caitlin Yankowskas and John CoughlinCaitlin Yankowskas and John Coughlin are on their way to claiming the first international medal of their careers. On Friday at the Ice Challenge in Graz, Austria, Yankowskas and Coughlin won the short program with 58.19 points, a little over a point higher than teammates Chloe Katz and Joseph Lynch (57.13).

Yankowskas and Coughlin started their program with a solid triple twist that earned them 5.97 points, more than any other element in their performance. They went on to perform a throw triple Salchow and the side-by-side triple toes, which received a negative grade of execution. Other elements included a Group 4 lift and a Level 4 pair combination spin.

Performing a program choreographed by renowned ice dance coach Igor Sphilband to “Saber Dance” and “Caravan,” Katz and Lynch performed a triple twist, side-by-side double Axels, a throw triple Salchow and a Group 4 lift. They received a Level 4 for both spins, Level 2 for their steps and Level 2 for their death spiral.

Italy’s Stefania Berton and Ondrej Hotarek are in third place with 53.15. Germany’s Maylin Hausch and Daniel Wende edged out Estonians Maria Sergejeva and Ilja Glebov for fourth place, 52.20 to 47.95. Stacy Kemp and David King of Great Britain are sixth of 10 pairs with 46.08.

Yankowskas and Coughlin made their international debut last season by taking sixth place at the Nebelhorn Trophy and Skate America, their first Grand Prix event. Katz and Lynch have one international medal, a silver from 2008 Coupe de Nice in Nice, France.

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