US Olympic Figure Skating Results 2022: Scores, Highlights and Reaction from Sunday

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVFebruary 7, 2022

Madison Chock and Evan Bates, of the United States, compete in the team ice dance program during the figure skating competition at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Monday, Feb. 7, 2022, in Beijing. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko

The skaters from the Russian Olympic Committee captured the first figure skating gold medal of the 2022 Beijing Olympics, but the skaters of the United States joined them on the podium as the silver medalists.

Sunday was the final day of the team competition that included eight different overall segments.

Three of those segments happened on the last day, and the Americans finished in fifth place in the pairs free skate (Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier), first in the ice dance free skate (Madison Chock and Evan Bates) and fourth place in the women's singles free skate (Karen Chen) to clinch the silver.

Team USA @TeamUSA

A masterpiece. ✨<a href="https://twitter.com/chockolate02?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@chockolate02</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/Evan_Bates?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Evan_Bates</a> dazzled us all! <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/WinterOlympics?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#WinterOlympics</a> <br> <a href="https://t.co/Gsax2T3XZ1">pic.twitter.com/Gsax2T3XZ1</a>

Japan earned the bronze to complete the medals.

Here is a look at how the event unfolded from the Americans' perspective.

Team Event Format

The team event started with 10 countries ready to compete in eight segments: a short program and a free skate for men's singles and women's singles, ice dance and pairs. However, the field was trimmed down to five after the short programs with the ROC, United States, Japan, Canada and China advancing.

The winner of each event earned 10 points for their country, while second place received nine, third place received eight and so on for the rest of the competitors.

After the eight segments, the points across the events were added up and the country with the most was the gold-medal winner.

Coming Into Sunday

The United States found itself in second place heading into the final day of competition with 42 points.

It trailed the ROC (45 points) and was ahead of Japan (39 points), Canada (30 points) and China (30 points).

It looked as if the Americans could be on their way to gold after Nathan Chen earned 10 points with a brilliant performance in the men's singles short program that may foreshadow his individual competition later in the Games. The Red, White and Blue maintained that momentum when Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue won 10 points in the ice dance short program.

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Welcome to the 2022 <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/WinterOlympics?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#WinterOlympics</a>, Nathan Chen. <a href="https://t.co/Vob07orLwf">pic.twitter.com/Vob07orLwf</a>

However, Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier finished in third place in the pairs short program, which is where Vincent Zhou placed in the men's singles free skate as well.

Karen Chen also disappointed on the way to fifth place in the women's short program. While it was unrealistic to expect her to keep pace with the dazzling performance of the ROC's Kamila Valieva, finishing outside of the top three put the United States in comeback mode entering Sunday's slate and made winning the gold medal quite the daunting task.

Sunday's Results

Pairs Free

  1. Anastasia Mishina/Aleksandr Galliamov, ROC: 145.20 (10 points)
  2. Riku Miura/Ryuichi Kihara, Japan: 139.60 (9 points)
  3. Peng Cheng/Jin Yang, China: 131.75 (8 points)
  4. Vanessa James/Eric Radford, Canada: 130.07 (7 points)
  5. Alexa Knierim/Brandon Frazier, United States: 128.97 (6 points)

If a gold medal for the ROC wasn't inevitable before Sunday's first event, it was after it.

Despite a hard fall, Anastasia Mishina and Aleksandr Galliamov paced the field in the pairs free skate thanks to the overall technical difficulty of their program. That wasn't the only troubling news for the Americans, as Knierim and Frazier finished in last place.

That dropped the United States into a tie for second place with Japan as its early momentum from the opening two wins in the team event faded further into the background.

Ice Dance Free

  1. Madison Chock/Evan Bates, United States: 129.07 (10 points)
  2. Victoria Sinitsina/Nikita Katsalapov, ROC: 128.17 (9 points)
  3. Piper Gilles/Paul Poirier, Canada: 124.39 (8 points)
  4. Wang Shiyue/Liu Xinyu, China: 107.18 (7 points)
  5. Misato Komatsubara/Tim Koleto, Japan: 98.66 (6 points)

The Americans needed a big performance from their team co-captains if they wanted to win silver after the disappointing showing in the pairs free, and they got just that in dramatic fashion.

Chock and Bates outperformed even the ROC's Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov to win the ice dance free event and earn 10 critical points to create some much-needed separation from Japan.

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How we imagine <a href="https://twitter.com/chockolate02?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@chockolate02</a> and <a href="https://twitter.com/Evan_Bates?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Evan_Bates</a> arrived at the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/WinterOlympics?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#WinterOlympics</a>.<br><br>📺 NBC and <a href="https://twitter.com/peacockTV?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@peacockTV</a> <br>💻 <a href="https://t.co/FzCzqMTt5P">https://t.co/FzCzqMTt5P</a> <a href="https://t.co/ajEtCmgNvY">pic.twitter.com/ajEtCmgNvY</a>

It took some of the drama away from the women's singles free skate since the medals were all but decided, but it was also a memorable showing from the couple—both on and off the ice—in the face of Olympic pressure.

Women's Singles Free

  1. Kamila Valieva, ROC: 178.92 (10 points)
  2. Kaori Sakamoto, Japan: 148.66 (9 points)
  3. Madeline Schizas, Canada: 132.04 (8 points)
  4. Karen Chen, United States: 131.52 (7 points)
  5. Zhu Yi, China: 91.41 (6 points)

All Chen had to do to clinch the silver was avoid a last-place finish in the women's singles free skate, and she bounced back from her short program with a clean skate.

While Valieva was an unbeatable force once again and completed a head-turning quad, the American was visibly thrilled with her showing as she put the finishing touches on the overall showing for her country.

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.<a href="https://twitter.com/Karebearsk8?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Karebearsk8</a> got her Olympic moment. ❤️ <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/WinterOlympics?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#WinterOlympics</a> <a href="https://t.co/kHSl2G6ult">pic.twitter.com/kHSl2G6ult</a>

The result was a spot on the podium and a silver medal after a performance that included plenty of highs and victories in the men's singles short, ice dance short and ice dance free.