Angela Maxwell and Kiri Baga finished sixth and seventh at the Junior Grand Prix Final on Sunday in Tokyo, Japan, with 137.55 and 122.35 points respectively. Both had errors in their free programs that put them out of medal contention.
Following a five triple jump free skate, Japan’s Kanako Murakami of Japan won the gold medal with 160.53 points. The silver medal went to short program winner Polina Shelepen (159.29) of Russia while American Christina Gao (151.47) claimed the bronze.
Gao, who stood in fifth place following the short program, gave a strong performance to “La Fille Mal Gardée” that featured six triple jumps. With a seasons best of 98.65 for the free skate, her total score added up to 151.47 points, enough to put her on the Final podium in her first season on the circuit.
Maxwell rebounded from her last place short program, placing fifth in the free skate with a program that had four clean triple jumps. Her first triple Lutz received a warning for the wrong take off edge while her triple toe in the triple toe-double toe combination was downgraded. Among the highlights of her performance were her opening double Axel, which received a 1.60 grade of execution, and a Level 4 spiral sequence.
Ellie Kawamura finished eighth after a free skate that included two triples and five doubles.
Baga was seventh in both portions of the competition. In her free skate, she stumbled three times, falling on the opening triple Lutz and both triple Salchows. She also had the second and third jump in her triple toe-double toe-double loop downgraded for under rotation. While Baga had problems on the jumps, her spins were excellent, receiving Level 4s along with her spiral sequence.
In ice dance, Ksenia Monko and Kirill Khaliavin of Russia danced to the gold with 141.21 points in what was their first Junior Grand Prix Final. Their Russian teammates Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov, newcomers as well, overtook Americans Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani to earn the silver medal, 139.36 to 138.75.
Isabella Cannuscio and Ian Lorello of the United States were sixth overall with 118.11.
Figure Skaters Online strives to be an accurate source of information related to the sport of figure skating. To report an error, please e-mail the news editor. Include the article date and title in your e-mail.