Nathan Chen wins third straight national figure-skating title with ease

Nathan Chen was skating up to collect his medal — gold, of course — when he tripped on the small carpet in front of the podium and nearly fell.

Until then, there was hardly any hint of a misstep for Chen, who won his third straight title at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Detroit. The reigning world champion, Chen was biggest star at this competition, and he won the final event Sunday with a score of 342.22 — over 58 points more than runner-up Vincent Zhou. Jason Brown was third.

“It’s really an honor to be on top of the podium today,” Chen said. “There’s really not much to say besides the fact that I’m extremely happy and really proud of myself and all the work that I put in, and also how much of an honor it is to be up here with these two guys.”

Chen’s free skate alone earned 228.80 points, which was higher than the total score for 14 of the 20 skaters.

The 19-year-old Chen landed four quad jumps in his routine, one of which was in combination. When he wasn’t impressing with his jumping ability, he kept the crowd captivated with his easy, elegant skating to “Land of All” by Woodkid.

elsewhere

U.S. soccer team

shuts out Panama

Gregg Berhalter became the third U.S. coach in the modern era to start with a win, Djordje Mihailovic and Christian Ramirez scored in their national-team debuts and the Americans beat Panama 3-0 in Glendale, Ariz, in an exhibition between nations that started inexperienced lineups.

Walker Zimmerman also scored for the U.S., which used a roster of players all from Major League Soccer and drew 9,040, its smallest for a home game since October 2016.

Seven U.S. players made debuts, including five starters — most in the starting lineup since Sept. 3, 1992, at Canada.

Football: Oklahoma State hired Princeton’s Sean Gleeson as offensive coordinator. Gleeson was offensive coordinator for a Princeton squad that went undefeated in 2018. The Tigers led the FCS in offense with 47 points per game.

Horse racing: Jockey Kent Desormeaux rallied X S Gold over the final furlong at Santa Anita to earn his 6,000th career victory. The 48-year-old Hall of Famer won the first race by a head for trainer Jim Cassidy to reach the plateau.

Baseball: Former Giants reliever Hunter Strickland and the Seattle Mariners finalized a $1.3 million, one-year contract.

Motor sports: Taylor Racing Wayne, with anchor driver Fernando Alonso, won the rain-wrecked Rolex 24 at Daytona Beach, Fla. The race was called 10 minutes short of completion because heavy rain had created driving conditions too dangerous to continue.

•In the closest-ever finish to the Monte Carlo Rally in Monaco, world champion Sebastien Ogier beat main rival Thierry Neuville by 2.2 seconds to win the season-opening race.

Skiing: Aksel Lund Svindal, the Olympic downhill champion from Norway, announced his retirement from racing, saying he plans to compete in the super-G on Feb. 6 and the downhill three days later at the championships in Are, Sweden, before calling it a career.

Rugby: Fiji beat the United States 38-0 to win the New Zealand leg of the World Rugby Sevens Series in Hamilton, defending its title and consigning the U.S. to its third straight loss in a tournament final.

This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Nathan-Chen-wins-third-straight-national-13566100.php.

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