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Ashley Wagner challenges Russians at Skate Canada short program

Ashley Wagner

Ashley Wagner, of the United States, skates during the ladies short program at Skate Canada International in Kelowna, British Columbia, Friday, Oct., 31, 2014. (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, Jonathan Hayward)


Ashley Wagner took second place in the Skate Canada short program despite under-rotating two of her jumps, putting her within striking distance of Russian leader Anna Pogorilaya going into the free skate Saturday.

Wagner, 23, was pleased with the performance (video here), her first of the Grand Prix season, after she finished in last place at the Japan Open earlier this month.

Wagner was seventh in the short program and overall at the Sochi Olympics in February and the World Championships in March, against deeper fields.

But Wagner did something Friday her Olympic teammate, Gracie Gold, was unable to at Skate America last week -- beat a Russian. Wagner outscored 2012 World silver medalist Alena Leonova.

The short program leader Pogorilaya was fourth at the World Championships. Neither Pogorilaya nor Leonova made Russia’s Olympic team for Sochi.

NBC and NBC Sports Live Extra will air Skate Canada coverage Sunday from 1-2:30 p.m. ET.

Skate Canada women’s short program
1. Anna Pogorilaya (RUS) 65.28
2. Ashley Wagner (USA) 63.86
3. Alena Leonova (RUS) 62.54
8. Courtney Hicks (USA) 56.36

Surprise U.S. scores in Skate Canada men’s short program

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