Canada’s Soucisse, Firus in third after short dance at Four Continents

TAIPEI CITY, Taiwan — Canada’s Carolane Soucisse and Shane Firus skated a personal best score to put them in third place after Wednesday’s short dance at the ISU Four Continents figure skating championships.

Americans Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker lead the 14-couple field with 69.08 points, followed by Japan’s Kana Muramoto and Chris Reed, with 65.27. Soucisse, from Chateauguay, Que., and Firus, from North Vancouver, B.C., have 65.11.

“We did what we had to do today,” Soucisse said. “We are just coming from (Canadian championships) and we were ready and pumped to go. It was a short turnover time but I think we delivered.”

Barely two weeks from the Pyeongchang Games, Canada sent skaters to Four Continents who missed qualifying for its Olympic team.

Haley Sales of Burnaby, B.C., and Nikolas Wamsteeker of Langley, B.C. are eighth, while Sarah Arnold and Thomas Williams of Vancouver are ninth.

In pairs, Lubov Ilyushechkina and Dylan Moscovitch of Toronto are fifth after the short program, but their score of 64.50 was only 2.26 points off the leaders Ashley Cain and Timothy Leduc of the U.S.

“Our goal was to go out there and have fun today,” Moscovitch said. “We kept an upbeat feeling throughout the program. We really committed ourselves to the choreography and the characters and we felt that came out.”

Sydney Kolodziej of Montreal and Maxime Deschamps of Vaudreuil-Dorion, Que., are eighth and Camille Ruest of Rimouski, Que., and Drew Wolfe of Calgary are ninth.

Japan holds down the top three spots in women’s singles, with Satoko Miyahara in the lead. Alaine Chartrand of Prescott, Ont., is eighth, Alicia Pineault of Varennes, Que., 14th and Michelle Long of Newmarket, Ont., 17th.

“It wasn’t perfect but I was happy with my fight,” Chartrand said. “It’s good to have that kind of feeling in my last short program of the season.”

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