Karen Chen of Fremont, California won the silver medal Friday night at the U.S. Figure Skating Championship in Nashville.
She finished just 2.4 points behind gold medal winner Mariah Bell, 25. Bell is the oldest winner of the championship in 95 years.
The favorite going into the championship, Alysa Liu, dropped out of the finals after testing positive for COVID.
The 16 year old from Richmond, CA would have entered the final round in third place after falling in the short program. The selection committee. can still name the two-time national champion to the Olympic team based on results from the past year.
Chen and Bell are certain to make the team, barring a shocking decision from the committee. IIsabeau Levito won the bronze, but at 14 is not age-eligible for the Olympics. If Liu is not selected, the fourth-place finisher, Gabriella Izzo, could be the choice.
Chen, 22, is the only one in contention with Olympic experience having competed in the 2018 games in Pyeongchang.
Bell broke into tears after winning her first national championship.
“It means a lot. I’ve been working on this for a real long time. I’m really grateful,” she told NBC.
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