Ice Network

Kim triumphs in return to U.S. adult championships

Skater missed 2017 event due to 'adulting;' Westmoreland wins ladies
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After skipping last year's event, Brian Kim came back to the U.S. Adult Figure Skating Championships this season and skated off with the championship adult gold men's title. -Jay Adeff

Brian Kim (North County FSC) missed the 2017 U.S. Adult Figure Skating Championships due to "adulting," but he returned to this year's event to take it all.

Kim used the time away from competitive skating to work on his artistry, skating skills -- and double salchow. When he took the ice in the championship adult gold men's event to music from the Korean movie Ditto, he showed just how much his work had paid off, with two double salchows, a new personal-best score of 40.29 and his first U.S. title.

The now four-time U.S. adult medalist gave all the credit for his improvement to coaches James Reamy, Jonathan Cassar and Colleen Mickey, and partner Gary Rice.

"[Rice] has been my number one supporter, my number one fan and my number one rock," Kim said. "He and my coaches...when I'm skating, what people are seeing -- they're seeing them. They're seeing what they put into me. They've taught me everything that I know."

Serafin Ong (All Year FSC) moved up two spots from where she finished last season to take the silver. Skating to music from the album Moment of Glory by Scorpions and the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, she was awarded 36.71 points -- nearly seven more than she earned a year ago.

After skipping last year's event, Marco Pizzo returned to the podium with a performance to Chris Mann's cover of Frank Sinatra's "My Way" that earned the All Year FSC representative 33.45 points. Pizzo won the gold in this category in 2016.

Alan Emerick (Red Rose FSC), who won the silver medal last year, captured the pewter with 32.24 points.

Championship Adult Gold Ladies

Skating to the song "Ave Maria" by Beyoncé, Kathleen Westmoreland (Dallas FSC) won the championship adult gold ladies title Saturday morning at the New England Sports Center in Marlborough, Massachusetts. 

"I went with something softer this year," said Westmoreland, who wore a violet dress. "I was glad I could stay in the moment, and it was a personal-best score, too."

For Westmoreland, it was her fourth time at the U.S. adult championships and third time competing in the gold ladies category. She finished with 40.52 points. Her program featured all Level 3 spins and two double salchows (one in combination).

Grace Stuever (Pittsburgh FSC) repeated as silver medalist, finishing with 39.01 points. She performed a snappy Latin number to "Quizas, Quizas, Quizas" (Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps) by Pink Martini and Thalía's "Mujer Latina."

"It ("Mujer Latina") was a song I skated to as a kid, and I wanted to bring it back because it was such a fun song," Stuever said.

The runner-up performed all Level 3 spins, a double salchow and a double toe loop.

Heather Hilgar (University of Delaware FSC), a veteran of 18 of these championships who is coached by two-time U.S. ice dance champion and Olympian Suzy Semanick-Schurman, secured the bronze medal with 37.89 points for her free skate to "Gracie's Theme" by Paul Cardall. She received positive Grades of Execution on all of her elements, except for her axel combination.

Diana Cheng (Baltimore FSC) won the pewter medal with a score of 34.94.