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Favorites don't disappoint at Midwesterns

Junior ladies gold medalist Angela Maxwell followed up her first-place short program with a second-place free skate to win.
Junior ladies gold medalist Angela Maxwell followed up her first-place short program with a second-place free skate to win. (Daphne Backman)

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By Tim Russell, special to icenetwork.com
(11/18/2007) - The favorites rose to the top Saturday in the senior ice dancing competition at the 2008 Midwestern Sectionals at the Onyx Rink in Rochester, Mich.

Jennifer Wester and Daniil Barantsev took first in all three dances -- compulsory, original and free -- to take the title. The husband-wife team took first with a score of 152.15. They will advance to the 2008 U.S. Championships in St. Paul, Minn., as will all the overall winners.

Mauri Gustafson and Joel Dear finished second with 135.23 points while Stacy Kim and Jonathan Harris were third at 103.31.

Wester and Barantsev, the 2007 Nebelhorn Trophy gold medalists, won the sectional title with a strong free dance. They scored 79.97 points to Gustafson and Dear's 67.36. The couple began skating together in early 2003 and married three years later.

Senior Ladies

Molly Oberstar used a strong short program and very good free skate to take the senior ladies title with 144.35 points. Becky Bereswill finished second with 137.87 points.

Oberstar won the short program with a score of 56.98 and took second in the free skate at 87.37.

Megan Hyatt won the free skate with 88.39 points, but only finished fourth in the short program (48.28 points).

Senior Pairs

Caitlin Yankowskas and John Coughlin took first in senior pairs with 159.71 points. The duo was first in both the free skate and the short program.

Amber Wehrle and Nicholas Kole were second in both events and scored a total of 124.57 points. Kendra Moyle and Steven Pottenger were third with 105.77 points.

Junior Ladies

Angela Maxwell followed up a first place short program with a second-place free skate to win in junior ladies. She scored 152.16 points. Maxwell took first in the short program with 56.61 and second in the free skate ( 95.55).

Kirsten Olsen took second overall with 148.68 points. She was second in the short program and third in the free skate. Free skate winner Alexa Scimeca only finished fourth in the short program. She had 148.28 points overall.

Junior Men

Alexander Johnson took first in both the short program and free skate and skated to the overall title with 199.26 points.

Grant Hochstein finished second in the short program and third in the free skate with a total of 166.42 points. William Brewster tallied 163.64 points, thanks to a third-place short program and second-place free skate.

Junior Pairs

A very strong free skate pushed Janyce Okamoto and Ryan Berning to the overall junior pairs title. The pair scored a 74.94 in the free skate for an overall total of 117.47.

Jaylyn Kelly and Gabe Woodruff were second in both the short program and free skate, tallying 117.18 points. Short program winners Claire Davis and Nathan Miller only finished third in the free skate, scoring 116.92 points overall.

Andrea Best and Trevor Young finished fourth overall with 80.73 points.

Junior Ice Dancing

Madison Hubbell and Keiffer Hubbell finished first in all three dances, and took home a first place score of 161.58 points.

Piper Gilles and Timothy McKernan finished second with 150.81 points. Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani were third (140.61) while Shannon Wingle and Ryan Devereaux were fourth (139.16).