by Lindsay Higgins

Senior Compulsory Dance
The senior compulsory dance was the Yankee Polka, which Navarro (Santa Rosa FSC) and Bommentre (Philadelphia SC&HS) won easily. Their expression is good without being over the top, and they have nice quick feet. For a fairly new team, they interact well with each other on the ice, although this isn’t surprising since both did the same with their former partners. Kate Slattery (Philadelphia SC&HS) and Chuen-Gun Lee (All Year FSC) were second, having made some noticeable improvements since Lake Placid, and Liz Palmer (Portland ISC) and Jonathan Toman were third. Overall scores were 29.81 for Navarro and Bommentre, 27.1 for Slattery and Lee, and 19.4 for Palmer and Toman.

Sorry, but the OD was too late at night for me- although at least it began and ended on time as far as I know. Senior Pairs was also scheduled ridiculously late, and ended up running an hour behind.

Senior Free Dance
Skating to Michael Buble, Navarro and Bommentre won the free dance by a wide margin despite a 1.00 deduction. (For those of you not familiar with Buble, he’s a youngish guy, late twenties I think, who does older songs- swing, big band, etc. Great ice dance music. He did some singing live for a Kurt Browning show in Canada a couple of years ago). The style was a good one for them and the program should do reasonably well at Nationals, garnering a score here of 81.74 to bring them to 160.79 overall.

Slattery and Lee skated to Phantom of the Opera, a popular choice this season. They do a nice job with the dramatic nature of the program, and if their recent coaching change allows them to continue progressing at this rate they’ll be a force to contend with a few years down the road. Their total score for the competition was 144.68

Palmer and Toman had some issues with unison, and she had a noticeable stumble on at least one twizzle, resulting in a total deduction of 4.00. It’s hard to judge progress or potential without knowing exactly how long they’ve been together- both skated with other partners last season, she in senior and he in junior- but their overall score of 85.43 indicates a big gap between them and Slattery and Lee.