Updated: Sunday, 12 January 2014 07:23 | By Agence France-Presse

Davis, White win sixth US ice dance title

Two-time reigning world ice dance champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White captured their sixth consecutive ice dance crown at the US Figure Skating Championships by winning Saturday's free dance final.


Davis, White win sixth US ice dance title

Meryl Davis and Charlie White skate in the free dance program during the 2014 US Figure Skating Championships at TD Garden on January 11, 2014 in Boston, Massachusetts

Davis and White took the free dance triumph with 119.50 points and claimed the overall title with a personal best total score of 200.19.

"We're proud of everything we've accomplished," White said. "We're excited to win that title and carry the momentum into the Olympics."

While spots on the US squad for Sochi will be named only by a US Figure Skating selection committee on Sunday rather than by nationals results, Davis and White figure to be the top US hope for gold next month in Russia.

"We're working to earn gold," Davis said. "We're working really hard for it."

Davis and White finished second at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics when they were beaten by their training partners, Canadians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir.

Madison Chock and Evan Bates were second overall on 181.44 with siblings Maia and Alex Shibutani third on 170.44.

Hometown favorites Marissa Castelli and Simon Shnapir won their second consecutive US pairs title despite only managing a third-place finish in the free skate.

Shnapir, a tall Moscow-born skater whose parents emigrated to the United States when he was a baby, and Castelli took the overall crown with 205.71 points.

"It was just amazing," Castelli said of the cheers after their performance. "The crowd was spectacular. It was such a magical moment."

Caydee Denney and John Coughlin, the 2012 US champions, won the free skate with 136.03 but finished third overall on 201.43 points.

Felicia Zhang and Nathan Bartholomay finished second in the free skate with 135.22 points, edging Denny and Coughlin for second overall on 201.72.

"We left our hearts out there," Zhang said. "We did the best that we could."

The mixed bag of results threw into doubt exactly which two of the top three couples would be selected for Sochi.

Castelli fell on a quad salchow throw landing in the free skate routine, performed to music from James Bond movies, and she and Shnapir were third in the free skate after dominating the short program Thursday.

Shnapir had no regrets about trying the difficult quad move.

"We've been doing it all year, and we're going to continue to do it, hopefully in Russia," he said. "We've nailed it in practice, and we're not going to give up on it."

Competition was set to continue later Saturday with the women's free skate with the men's free skate set for Sunday.

Three women and ice dance duos and two men and pairs couples will represent the United States at Sochi.

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