Bereswill wins junior ladies at JGP Final

Fujisawa jumps from seventh to take silver

Becky Bereswill leapfrogged from fourth to win gold.
Becky Bereswill leapfrogged from fourth to win gold. (Paul Tortland)


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By J. Barry Mittan, special to
(12/13/2008) - American Becky Bereswill won the ladies competition at the SBS ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final, jumping up from fourth in the short program.

Bereswill exceeded her personal best in the free skate by almost 15 points, scoring 98.01 points to finish with 146.69, also a personal best.

Skating to "Nessum Dorma," Bereswill landed triple loop-double loop, triple flip-double toe-double loop, and double Axel-triple toe combinations. She also completed a triple Lutz, triple toe loop and double Axel, but popped a triple loop.

"I was very excited for the free skate," Bereswill said. "My goal was just to perform the music and the story. I just went with that feeling and really enjoyed my time out there."

Japan's Yukiko Fujisawa was only seventh in the short program, but rebounded with a personal best score of 101.44 to win the free skate and the silver medal with 145.92 total points.

Skating to Prokofiev's "Cinderella," Fujisawa featured her double Axel throughout the program, landing three, including two triple Lutz-double Axel sequences, a rare occurrence in singles programs.

Fujisawa also landed a triple toe-double toe-double loop combination, plus triple flip, triple Salchow and triple toe loop and finished her program with a nice layback into a full Biellmann spin.

"I was very confident in my free skating today," she said. "I think these were my best jumps of the season."

Alexe Gilles, the winner of the short program, also scored a personal best 90.25 points in the free skate, placing fourth. Skating to a mix of four Latin tunes, Gilles won the bronze medal with a total of 144.49 points.

She had to do a double three after her first triple toe loop before landing a double toe loop in a planned triple toe-triple toe combination, then landed a triple Lutz, triple flip and triple loop.

But then she popped the opening jump in a planned triple Lutz-double toe combination before landing a double Axel and a triple Salchow-double toe loop-double loop combination with the triple Salchow downgraded.

"I think I could have skated better," she said. "Overall it was not a very good performance. Third is not bad and I can keep improving on that."

Japan's Kanako Murakami finished third in the free skate with 90.59 points to finish fourth with 141.63 points overall. She had trailed only Gilles in the short program.

Her Latin-themed program included a triple flip-double toe and a downgraded triple Salchow-double loop-double loop combination, but she singled both jumps in her planned triple Salchow-double loop combination. Murakami also landed a triple toe, triple Lutz and triple flip, but her double Axel was downgraded.

"I was very tense, very nervous," she said. "I under-rotated two jumps and that was bad."

U. S. skater Angela Maxwell scored 82.91 points in the free skate, placing fifth in the segment. Third after the short program, Maxwell finished fifth overall with 131.75 points. Maxwell skated to music from the Inuyasha soundtrack.

Maxwell completed a double Axel, triple Lutz and triple loop, but she doubled the second jump in a planned triple toe-triple toe combination, popped her triple flip, and fell on the opening triple flip in a planned triple flip-double toe combination.

Using Bach's "Toccata and Fugue," American Amanda Dobbs finished seventh in the free skate with 69.59 points. Dobbs was fifth after the short program and placed seventh overall with 117.07 points.

Dobbs triple Salchow-double toe and triple toe-double toe combinations were downgraded and she fell on the run out after the triple toe loop. Dobbs also stepped out of the second double Axel in her double Axel-double Axel sequence.

Canada's Diane Szmiett, skating to music from the soundtrack of La Farrucas Flamenco, struggled in her free skate, falling on two of her first three jumps. She finished last in the free skate with points and eighth overall with 113.25. She was sixth after the short.

Kristine Musademba, who finished last in the short program, scored 79.82 points in the free skate to place sixth in the segment. She placed sixth overall with 122.86 points. She skated to "Queen of Sheba." Musademba struggled with the first two jumps, putting a hand down on her opening triple Lutz and the first jump in her triple flip-double toe combination. She then landed two double Axels, including a double Axel-double toe combination, plus a triple loop and triple toe loop. But she fell on the the double toe loop in a planned triple toe-double toe-double loop combination and was unable to try the double loop.