Nagasu lands first triple axel at Olympics as Americans claim bronze medal

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UCCS international business student Mirai Nagasu executed the first triple axel by an American woman at the Olympics as she helped the United States to the bronze medal in the figure skating team event at the 2018 Winter Olympics. She competed in the penultimate competition of the team event early Feb. 12 at the Gangneung Ice Arena in South Korea.

Nagasu landed the triple axel 21 seconds into her free skate and finished with a season-best score of 137.53. She finished second among the five competitors and helped the United States expand its lead for third place against Italy before the final event of the competition.

Nagasu and the United States scored 62 points with Nathan Chen in the men’s short program, Adam Rippon in the men’s free skate, Bradie Tennell in the ladies’ short program, Alexa Scimeca Knierim and Chris Knierim in the pairs’ short program and pairs’ free skate, and Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani in the short dance and free dance. It was the first Olympic medal for each team member. Canada won the team event with 73 points and the Olympic Athletes from Russia won the silver medal with 66 points.

Nagasu will continue competition in the ladies single event. She competes in the short program at 6 p.m. MST Feb. 20 and the free skate at 6 p.m. MST Feb. 22. The competition will be covered live on NBC and NBC Sports Network.

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