Celski, Goetz win at Short Track World Cup Qualifier

BY foxsports • October 2, 2016

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) U.S. Speedskating wrapped up its Short Track World Cup Qualifier on Sunday with three-time Olympic medalist J.R. Celski dominating for a second consecutive day. The event was used to determine the ISU World Cup team, which is scheduled to be announced Monday.

Celski swept all four events over the two days, including wins in the 500 meters (41.380 seconds) and 1,000 (1:24.926) on Sunday.

World Cup veteran John-Henry Krueger placed second in the 500 in 41.594 and third in the 1,000 in 1:25.061.

''I was focused on consistency and keeping my composure in each race,'' said Krueger, who had two second-place finishes Saturday. ''I'm still pretty young, so I don't know if it's right to say I'm in my prime yet. In the sport of short track, you're always improving. You never reach a max level.

''I'm focusing on the 2018 Olympics right now. That's my main focus, just trying to build up my armor and the dream is to win gold.''

Thomas Insuk Hong took third in the 500 in 41.665 and Keith Carrol Jr. was second in the 1,000 in 1:25.041.

The 22-year old Kimberly Goetz was the overall women's winner by placing second in all four events, including the 500 (44.308) and 1,000 (1:43.665) on Sunday. Two-time Olympic medalist Katherine Reutter, who has come out of retirement, won the 1,000 in 1:43.506 and Kristen Santos was third in 1:43.901. Jessica Smith-Kooreman won the 500 (44.296) and Santos was third in 44.416.

Goetz has made the last two World Cup teams and came in with the goal of winning the overall event. She's more focused on learning this World Cup season with the hope of gaining the experience necessary to make an Olympic run at the PyeongChang Games in 2018.

''It's nice to have Katherine back and racing girls with a lot more experience than I have between her and Jessica Smith,'' Goetz said. ''It's good to kind of compare myself to them and I've got a few weeks to work on things.

''I'm definitely the rookie out there in terms of the top three or four girls. ... I'm making baby steps. I don't feel like I'm anywhere close to where I can be or where I'd like to be. But I'm definitely on my way. I've got a lot to learn. ... I feel like I've got 50 percent of it down and I'm still missing that racing part.''

Goetz, Reutter, Smith-Kooreman, Santos, April Shin and Katherine Ralston finished the weekend as the top six women in the AmCup standings and are likely to be the six named to the World Cup team.

Celski, Krueger, Carroll Jr., Adam Callister, Hong and Ryan Pivirotto were the top six men in the AmCup standings and are also likely to make the World Cup team.

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