Quad lutz helps Alaska’s Keegan Messing finish 5th at Grand Prix Finals

Sliding into the boards after crashing on a jump probably wasn’t the best way for Girdwood figure skater Keegan Messing to wrap up his first Grand Prix finals, but that won’t be his only memory from one of the biggest competitions of his career.

The mistake came at the end of a program during which Messing landed a quadruple Lutz in competition for the first time, which gives him plenty of encouragement going forward.

Messing, 26, did well enough in Friday’s long program in Vancouver to move from sixth place to fifth place in the Finals, which featured an elite field of six men. Messing, who placed 12th at the Winter Olympics earlier this year, was added to the field when two-time Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu withdrew with an injury.

Nathan Chen of the United States won with 282.42 points. Japan’s Shoma Uno finished second with 275.10 points and South Korea’s Junhwan Cha took bronze with 263.49.

Messing, who lives in Alaska but competes for Canada because he has dual citizenship, scored 236.05 points.

Beth Bragg

Beth Bragg wrote about sports and other topics for the ADN for more than 35 years, much of it as sports editor. She retired in October 2021. She's contributing coverage of Alaskans involved in the 2022 Winter Olympics.