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  1. #521
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    Here is a list of top 2 international scores / top domestic score or 2 (in parentheses) so far this season for those US pairs competing as Seniors at Nationals:

    1. Denney/Coughlin 179.21 178.90 (172.16)
    2. Castelli/Shnapir 174.86 174.51 (165.74)
    3. Scimeca/Knierim 163.10 156.00 (158.63)
    4. Donlan/Speroff 145.35 135.43 (150.00)
    5. Davis/Ladwig 143.70 122.26 (144.35)
    6. Vise/Baldwin 143.34 143.15 (138.68)
    7. Zhang/Bartholomay 143.32 (150.05)
    8. Kayne/O'Shea (150.50) (137.72)
    9. Denney/Frazier 127.33 (150.08)
    10.Baga/Toth (119.41) (106.73)
    11.Leng/Leduc (113.44)
    12.Yankowskas/Reagan ?

    Look at the muddle from 4th - 7th. Pewter is really up for grabs!
    ^^^ Scores and competitions can be found at: http://unseenskaters.wordpress.com/s...-pairs-scores/

    Denney/Frazier's only international was the JGP in Lake Placid (they withdrew from their 2nd JGP due to injury and haven't competed since; they also changed coaches/training locations this fall), while Yankowskas/Reagan only competed a SP at Skate Detroit in July and later changed their SP music for Champs Camp.

    I've bolded and identified the team's most recent competition (Donlan reportedly wasn't feeling well at Ice Challenge; their best international score was at Nebelhorn Trophy):
    Denney/Coughlin 179.21, CoR 178.90 (172.16)
    Castelli/Shnapir 174.86 174.51, NHK (165.74)
    Scimeca/Knierim 163.10, NHK 156.00 (158.63)
    Donlan/Speroff 145.35 135.43, Ice Challenge (150.00)
    Davis/Ladwig 143.70, NHK 122.26 (144.35)
    Vise/Baldwin 143.34 143.15, CoR (138.68)
    Zhang/Bartholomay 143.32, Salt Lake Sr B (150.05) [Note: Felicia skated injured at Eastern Sectionals to qualify for Nationals]
    Kayne/O'Shea (150.50) (137.72, Easterns)
    Denney/Frazier 127.33*, JGP (150.08)
    Baga/Toth (119.41) (106.73, Mids)
    Leng/LeDuc (113.44, Mids)

    * = Junior score
    Last edited by Sylvia; 11-29-2012 at 07:04 PM. Reason: to add quoted part
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

  2. #522
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    12 Junior pairs have qualified for Nationals, 6 competed on the JGP this fall.

    Easterns 1-5:
    Olivia Oltmanns/Joshua Santillan 120.42 [102.46, JGP Lake Placid, 12th]
    Alexandria Shaughnessy/James Morgan 116.76
    Cali Fujimoto/Nicholas Barsi-Rhyne 111.62
    Caitlin Belt/Michael Johnson 107.23
    Brenna Doherty/Craig Norris [new] 105.04

    Midwesterns 1-2:
    Madeline Aaron/Max Settlage 136.09 [130.44, JGP Lake Placid, 3rd]
    Brianna de la Mora/Taylor Wilson 122.57 [113.58, JGP AUT, 11th]
    BYE Britney Simpson/Matthew Blackmer [133.05, JGP AUT, 5th]

    Pacifics 1-4:
    Jessica Noelle Calalang/Zack Sidhu 129.25 [123.88, JGP AUT, 6th]
    Chelsea Liu/Devin Perini 129.03
    Jessica Pfund/AJ Reiss 123.75 [124.42, JGP Lake Placid, 5th]
    Caitlin Fields/Jason Pacini 105.54
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

  3. #523
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skittl1321 View Post
    If anyone is interested Leng/LeDuc are skating in a show in Eastern Iowa this weekend.
    More information is available at the club page: http://eifscorg.ipower.com/eifsc/

    (Not affiliated, and sadly can't go)
    Local article about tomorrow's 2 pm & 7 pm shows (Saturday, Dec. 1) at the Cedar Rapids Ice Arena featuring DeeDee Leng & Tim LeDuc (he's from Iowa): http://thegazette.com/2012/11/28/rha...e-arena-dec-1/

    Local Florida news brief about the 3 Senior pairs based in Ellenton (Davis/Ladwig, Zhang/Bartholomay, Kayne/O'Shea) and 1 Novice pair that have qualified for Nationals: http://www.bradenton.com/2012/11/20/...-ellenton.html
    All eight competitors are slated to take part in the Ellenton Ice and Sports Complex holiday show titled "My Favorite Things: A Holiday Skating Spectacular" running Dec. 1-2. Tickets can be purchased at http://www.ellentonice.com or calling 723-3663.
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

  4. #524
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    Quote Originally Posted by johndockley92 View Post
    I don't know exactly the problem, but he seems like a bit of a diva, trying to be the star of the team (the star should be the girl). They only have one planned 5Li which is pretty bad for senior, it means that he can't do two lassos consistently (it's worth more, points-wise, and almost all senior teams do two lasso lifts).
    Based on what did you come to the conclusion that Toth is a diva and trying to be the star of the team? I don't see that when watching them. What I see is a new team with Baga being brand new to pairs. Might that have something to do with the level of difficulty in their lifts? It should also be noted that while she is petite, she is not a prepubescent little waif who can just wing it through lifts while the guy does all the work. Don't get me wrong, I'm not accusing Baga at all of not trying to pull her weight, I'm just noting the challenges in learning lifts at an older age. Lifts and other pair elements are quite foreign for the singles skaters who try to make a quick switch into pairs, and the more mature the skaters are when they start learning, the harder things can be. You begin to have to rely on muscles that haven't been a focus for you before. Baga/Toth's issues aren't unusual at all. Based on their interactions off ice, it is easy to see that they enjoy each other's company. And you really need to have fun working together to be able to have the patience required to develop a new team. I think they are definitely capable of scoring much better at Nationals than they did at Sectionals. Pairs is a hard enough discipline when you are experienced, never mind when you aren't, so I think we need to give these skaters a break sometimes.

  5. #525
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    Simpson/ Blackmer do seem to have a lot of potential as a pair. They made JGPF last season, but not this season. Unfortunately, pairs in the U.S. have seen so many splits and musical chairs teaming up over the years. Hopefully, S/B will last.
    I think Simpson/Blackmer are somewhat mismatched in size which might make it more difficult for them on some of their elements, but I enjoy how they skate together.
    Last edited by stjeaskategym; 11-30-2012 at 08:43 PM.

  6. #526
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    Quote Originally Posted by stjeaskategym View Post
    Based on what did you come to the conclusion that Toth is a diva and trying to be the star of the team? I don't see that when watching them. What I see is a new team with Baga being brand new to pairs. Might that have something to do with the level of difficulty in their lifts? It should also be noted that while she is petite, she is not a prepubescent little waif who can just wing it through lifts while the guy does all the work. Don't get me wrong, I'm not accusing Baga at all of not trying to pull her weight, I'm just noting the challenges in learning lifts at an older age. Lifts and other pair elements are quite foreign for the singles skaters who try to make a quick switch into pairs, and the more mature the skaters are when they start learning, the harder things can be. You begin to have to rely on muscles that haven't been a focus for you before. Baga/Toth's issues aren't unusual at all. Based on their interactions off ice, it is easy to see that they enjoy each other's company. And you really need to have fun working together to be able to have the patience required to develop a new team. I think they are definitely capable of scoring much better at Nationals than they did at Sectionals. Pairs is a hard enough discipline when you are experienced, never mind when you aren't, so I think we need to give these skaters a break sometimes.
    Thanks for your comments stjeaskategym. My apologies to Baga/ Toth (and to Brubaker too) for jumping onto the gossipy perceptions bandwagon that can be quite hurtful toward skaters (as well as unfair and/ or inaccurate).

  7. #527
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    Pairs in the US is pretty weak at the moment. Our best team can do the big tricks but lacks skating skills and grace.

  8. #528
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    John Coughlin is one of the Team USA Winter bloggers (along with Davis/White) -- here's his first blog post, dated November 13th: http://www.teamusa.org/Team-USA-Wint...me-Part-I.aspx
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

  9. #529
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammers View Post
    Pairs in the US is pretty weak at the moment. Our best team can do the big tricks but lacks skating skills and grace.
    This is totally inaccurate especially given what we have seen Internationally lately form several teams. I think it is totally exciting that we have such great teams (albeit new teams some of them) bursting out and holding their own.
    Another note on US Pairs it has never been a G & G time for us ever...even in our best days but I see in the future that may change..regardless I think in Senior and Junior we have some great teams at the moment.

  10. #530
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    John Coughlin is one of the Team USA Winter bloggers (along with Davis/White) -- here's his first blog post, dated November 13th: http://www.teamusa.org/Team-USA-Wint...me-Part-I.aspx
    Thanks for posting.


    Quote Originally Posted by figureit View Post
    This is totally inaccurate especially given what we have seen Internationally lately form several teams. I think it is totally exciting that we have such great teams (albeit new teams some of them) bursting out and holding their own.

    Another note on US Pairs it has never been a G & G time for us ever...even in our best days but I see in the future that may change..regardless I think in Senior and Junior we have some great teams at the moment.
    I agree that current U.S. pairs teams have great potential. Also, even though the U.S. has never been deep in pairs talent and medals, the U.S. has a history of excellent and successful teams including Karol Kennedy and Peter Kennedy (1950 World champions), JoJo Starbuck & Ken Shelley, Mark & Melissa Militano, Tai Babilonia & Randy Gardner (1979 World champions), Kitty & Peter Carruthers ('84 Olympic silver medalists), Peter Oppegard & Jill Watson ('88 Olympic bronze medalists), Kristi Yamaguchi & Rudi Galindo, Jenni Meno & Todd Sand, Kyoko Ina & Jason Dungjen, and Kyoko Ina & John Zimmerman. I'd also give a shout out to Lea Ann Miller and Bill Fauver, Calla Urbanski and Rocky Marval, Rena Inoue & John Baldwin, Marcy Hinzmann & Aaron Parchem, and Amanda Evora & Mark Ladwig.

    Rockne and Keauna were an excellent team, as were Rockne and Mary Beth. Hopefully, Rockne will find another partner and achieve even greater success. Frank Sweiding is a former eligible U.S. pairs competitor who has achieved notable success in the professional ranks with his partner, Anita Hartshorn.

    I think U.S. skaters should strive to break their own ground and not necessarily mold themselves into the Russian tradition. Case in point: Denney & Coughlin are very strong athletically, but they don't have a balletic or lyrical style. IMO, they should continue polishing their skills and refine their lines and on-ice look, but they don't need to copy a balletic approach. They should try to find music, choreo, and costumes that will bring out their best qualities and show off their strengths as a team -- they need to explore and define what makes them unique.

    Also, Castelli/ Shnapir; Scimeca/ Knierim; and Donlan/ Speroff, et al. are wonderful teams. U.S. pairs teams need to find a way to stay together and develop and grow stronger together.

  11. #531
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    I agree! We have some good teams, and some strong up and comers from junior too!

  12. #532

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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    Thanks for posting.
    I think U.S. skaters should strive to break their own ground and not necessarily mold themselves into the Russian tradition. Case in point: Denney & Coughlin are very strong athletically, but they don't have a balletic or lyrical style. IMO, they should continue polishing their skills and refine their lines and on-ice look, but they don't need to copy a balletic approach. They should try to find music, choreo, and costumes that will bring out their best qualities and show off their strengths as a team -- they need to explore and define what makes them unique.
    This is really good advice, not just for pairs but any discipline really. You can't out-Bolshoi the Bolshoi. That doesn't mean that there aren't other aesthetics that can be beautiful or dynamic. It's very captivating to see a team that displays a fully-realized original point of view.

  13. #533
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    ^^ Absolutely. A good example would be Savchenko/ Szolkowy who IMO brought a breath of fresh air to pairs skating, and explored new ground, creating their own aesthetic in the process.

    You've got to have all the basics down (i.e., technique and talent), but then fly free of antiquated traditions, break the rules and remake them. The right fit with choreography and music is key!

  14. #534
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    ^Couldn't agree more. But, I will say that watching John C. point his toes and try 110% to get into the POTO character is still good to see.

    I also like the Canadian example (which may be more fitting for someone like D/C). D/R and M/M are neither Russian ballerinas/Chinese explosive nor aesthetically in the stratosphere a la S/S. But they've taken the approach of really going for huge TES and training to skate it w/ confidence and verve, which ultimately leads to matchable PCS. So, maybe because D/C are so solid, in the future they can go for a 2nd more difficult SBS triple and/or a 3 jump combo technically, and work on those things like speed and even more blade control
    Last edited by olympic; 12-01-2012 at 10:52 PM.

  15. #535
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    ^^ Agree. My Canadian example would be Sale/ Pelletier. I love the chemistry they had on the ice, the way they looked together and the way they skated. During their professional career they performed some really great sexy hot programs too! Sexy without having to try too hard.

    Re Denney/Coughlin, as I said, of course they need to "point toes," and refine their lines, etc., but they don't need to copy a balletic style. They don't need to follow a Canadian style necessarily either, but sure they might be inspired by examples from other teams who don't rely on a traditional lyrical approach. Overall, I think D/C should try to carve out their own territory in order to take their skating to another level.

    Hurrah for North American pairs teams!

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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    ^^ Agree. My Canadian example would be Sale/ Pelletier. I love the chemistry they had on the ice, the way they looked together and the way they skated. During their professional career they performed some really great sexy hot programs too! Sexy without having to try too hard.

    Re Denney/Coughlin, as I said, of course they need to "point toes," and refine their lines, etc., but they don't need to copy a balletic style. They don't need to follow a Canadian style necessarily either, but sure they might be inspired by examples from other teams who don't rely on a traditional lyrical approach. Overall, I think D/C should try to carve out their own territory in order to take their skating to another level.

    Hurrah for North American pairs teams!
    Yeah, sorry if I was unclear, I didn't mean to adapt the Canadian style. I should've said D/C would do well to adapt their tactic - go for really big TES, refine it, and PCS will come along. Caydee would also do well to watch Meagan Duhamel. They're both 'spunky' and neither are ballerinas, but Meagan communicates who she is / her feelings to the audience and I think that also helps with the PCS. I sometimes get the impression Caydee is just blank out there

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    Sure I understand what you're saying, olympic. I think that makes sense. Generally, D/C already are very solid technically/ athletically, but perhaps they should increase their technical difficulty strategically (as you suggest). Along with that, however, I think it would benefit them to define and develop their own style on the ice with music and choreography that enhances their strengths, instead of sticking with boring, traditional programs.

    Caydee was very young when she shot to the top of the rankings and it does take time to mature. Now that she and John have been partners for a couple of seasons, they should both find a way to up the ante and bring more of who they are onto the ice. I think they already have a good connection, and should try to build upon that asset.

  18. #538
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    Sure I understand what you're saying, olympic. I think that makes sense. Generally, D/C already are very solid technically/ athletically, but perhaps they should increase their technical difficulty strategically (as you suggest). Along with that, however, I think it would benefit them to define and develop their own style on the ice with music and choreography that enhances their strengths, instead of sticking with boring, traditional programs.

    Caydee was very young when she shot to the top of the rankings and it does take time to mature. Now that she and John have been partners for a couple of seasons, they should both find a way to up the ante and bring more of who they are onto the ice. I think they already have a good connection, and should try to build upon that asset.
    IMO, one way that D/C could get even bigger TES would be the SBS jumps. Look at the SBS jumps that D/R and MT/M are trying (or have tried) - SBS 3t-seq.-3t, SBS 3s, SBS 3z (or SBS 3f). I'm not saying that this will come quickly to D/C (or that it would come at all) but time is ticking for Sochi '14. As stated before, the CAN teams have moved up over the past couple of seasons by going for ambitious elements and refining them.

    And of course, PCS would develop from small things: she pointing her toes, showing more emotion - to bigger things: Speed, upping the TES in those areas where they still can, and like you said, realizing who they are and refining a genuine style that judges and audiences world-wide would 'get', then selecting music and choreographing moves based on that.

    I sometimes get the impression that they skate to music that they and their coaches think international judges will like, but it comes across as a little artificial/ less genuine.

  19. #539

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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    I sometimes get the impression that they skate to music that they and their coaches think international judges will like, but it comes across as a little artificial/ less genuine.
    Completely agree with that -and it's not really a problem I see only in pairs. Not everyone is a pwetty pwincess and there's a big difference between looking elegant while still doing something new or modern and trying to mask posture issues by giving people balletic arm movements and a war horse classical program. If anything, having D/C skate to opera music (no matter how many electric guitars they have in the remix) only emphasizes that's not the right style for them.

  20. #540
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    I sometimes get the impression that they skate to music that they and their coaches think international judges will like, but it comes across as a little artificial/ less genuine.
    IMO, that's par for the course for every one of Sappenfeld's teams. She has zero sense of style and it hinders all of her teams.
    Adelina Sotnikova defeated the curse of Esta She is indeed the Greatest Of All Time!

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