The 2014 U.S. Figure Skating Championships came to a close Jan. 12 in Boston as Jeremy Abbott held off a surging Jason Brown to take his fourth national title. Although the decision by the sport's Olympic selection committee is pending, Abbott and Brown are likely to be named to the 2014 U.S. Olympic figure skating team.
Abbott, 28 and in his last year of competitive skating, delivered a solid long program that featured just one significant error. After completing the routine, he stood in the center of the rink, tearfully absorbing the crowd's admiration. His total competition score of 274.27 secured the gold medal.
Reigning Nebelhorn Trophy silver medalist Brown, a two-time World junior medalist, electrified the crowd with a stunning skate that made up for what it lacked in quad jumps with artistry in spades. He won the free skate with a personal best mark of 182.61 and finished second with a total score of 270.08.
Max Aaron, who won the 2013 national title, delivered a powerful skate that showed off his athleticism, and finished in bronze medal position with a total mark of 260.44. Joshua Farris finished in fourth place. Richard Dornbush, who entered the free skate in second, suffered an error pocked performance that left him in fifth.
As the top two finishers in a what was regarded as a wide open field of potential Sochi hopefuls, Abbott and Brown are likely to claim the two available 2014 U.S. Olympic figure skating team berths. If chosen, the berth would be Abbott's second, as he represented the nation in Vancouver in 2010. The decision of the selection committee will be revealed at 7 p.m. Eastern on Jan. 12.