Mirai Nagasu, who reportedly was considering appealing the decision to leave her off the Olympic figure skating team despite her finishing third at the US championships, decided on Sunday evening to accept it.
“I’m disappointed in the decision,” said the former champion, who was bypassed for two-time titlist Ashley Wagner, who placed fourth. “Though I may not agree with it, I have to respect the decision the federation made. And I’m grateful to everyone who has supported me and look forward to what comes next in my skating career.”
The next thing won’t be the March world championships in Japan, where Nagasu’s parents were born. The Olympic team of Gracie Gold, Polina Edmunds, and Wagner will compete there. It was unclear whether Nagasu was bypassed a second time or whether she refused the assignment, which often is given as a consolation prize to skaters who didn’t make the Olympic team. That was the case both for Max Aaron, who finished third in the men’s event and the pair of Caydee Denney and John Coughlin, who also were third.
Jeremy Abbott, who won his fourth men’s crown, pairs titlists Marissa Castelli and Simon Shnapir and the Olympic dance trio of Meryl Davis-Charlie White, Madison Chock-Evan Bates, and Maia and Alex Shibutani form the rest of the world team.
Who was the last woman before Edmunds to win the US junior title and make the Olympic team the following year? Arlington native Tina Noyes, who did it in 1964.
“I think that’s really cool to be in her company,” said Noyes, who also competed in the 1968 Games. “She’s like a fawn out there. She’s beautiful.”
Noyes was one of three teenagers that made the Innsbruck team, the first Olympic squad after the 1961 plane crash in Belgium that killed the entire entourage. “They sent a whole new team,” said Noyes, who was 15 when she went with the 15-year-old Peggy Fleming and 16-year-old Christine Haigler. “They sent kids who had never been to Europe. We had no experience.” Still, the trio finished 6-7-8, setting the stage for an American renaissance.
No language barrier
Shnapir, a Sudbury resident who was born in Moscow, celebrated his selection with a bit of Russian. “My na v Sochi [We’re on to Sochi],” he said. “I know it’s a cliche, but this is a dream come true,” said Shnapir, after the Skating Club of Boston competitors got the news by text message on Sunday morning. “We’re still a little bit shocked. We’ve worked so hard and done so much in our eight years together and this is such a great pinnacle for us.” . . . The newest crop of Olympians was saluted by a dozen members of the gold-medal pantheon during Sunday night’s skating spectacular at TD Garden — Dick Button (1948 and 1952), Tenley Albright (1956), Hayes Alan Jenkins (1956), Carol Heiss (1960), David Jenkins (1960), Fleming (1968), Dorothy Hamill (1976), Scott Hamilton (1984), Brian Boitano (1988), Kristi Yamaguchi (1992), Tara Lipinski (1998), and Sarah Hughes (2002) . . . Ross Miner, the Skating Clubber who performed his free skate to a “Boston Strong” theme, came out to an intro of “Sweet Caroline.”
John Powers can be reached at email@example.com.