West Potomac alum Ashley Wagner took gold Saturday at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Omaha.
Wagner, 21, is the first woman to win back-to-back U.S. championships since Michelle Kwan in 2005, according to The Washington Post.
“I don’t think anyone could have prepared me for how difficult this national championship was going to be,” Wagner told the Post. “All things considered, I’m very proud of what I achieved.”
Wagner had a strong start Saturday with her free skate set to "Bacchanale" from Samson and Delilah. Midway through her performance, she fell twice but still scored 121.27, topping out at first place in the competition.
"I think that sometimes when you think too much, things go wrong and I was thinking a little bit too much and then I got nervous going into the next jump," Wagner told USA Today.
Wagner finished the championships with 188.84 points, narrowly beating 17-year-old Gracie Gold’s score of 186.57. Agnes Zawadzki finished third, scoring 179.63.
Wagner was the first Olympic alternate for the 2010 Olympic Games. Shehas set her sights on competing in the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.
Wagner was born on an Army base in Germany and lived around the world with her family before settling in Alexandria. She began skating at age 5, when her mother offered ice skating or ballet. By age 13, Wagner already had been invited to compete on the international level. She attended West Potomac High School while balancing her skating career.
"I was kind of living a double life," Wagner said in a Patch interview in 2011. "I was just that girl who skates. But West Potomac was amazing. It's an extremely friendly atmosphere.”