Castelli-Shnapir win 1st pairs title despite error

8:34 PM, Jan 26, 2013   |    comments
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OMAHA, Neb. - Marissa Castelli and Simon Shnapir overcame a huge mistake to win their first pairs title at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships on Saturday.

Shnapir appeared to lose his edge as they went into their side-by-side spins and had to stand there until Castelli finished her spin. The big deduction dropped them to third in the free skate. But their big cushion after the short program was enough to keep them first overall with 180.61 points.

Alexa Scimeca and Christopher Knierim were second (172.75), but it might not be enough to get them to the world championships. Caydee Denney and John Coughlin have petitioned for a spot on the team, and U.S. Figure Skating is almost certain to send the two if he recovers from hip surgery.

Worlds are the qualifiers for the Sochi Olympics, and the Americans can't risk sending two inexperienced pairs.

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