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Around & about

Nagasu short program leader

Mirai Nagasu, the 2008 champion, edged out fellow previous winners Alissa Czisny and Rachael Flatt in the short program at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Greensboro, N.C. on Thursday night with a beguiling routine to "Witches of Eastwick."

But with the margin between the three so small -- just a point -- and only two spots on the world team available, Saturday night's free skate for the title should be quite the show.

Nagasu scored 63.35 points while Czisny, the 2009 champ, had 62.50 points. Flatt, the defending champion, scored 62.32.

"I've been competing like a chicken all year," Nagasu said. "But I've been working my butt off. I hope I can show the judges I can represent the USA well."

In the pairs short program, Caitlin Yankowskas and John Coughlin won with a steamy, seductive tango. Olympians Amanda Evora and Mark Ladwig were second going into the free skate.

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Michigan wins at Michigan State

Zack Novak scored 19 points and Stu Douglass made a big three-pointer with 20 seconds left, lifting Michigan to a 61-57 victory over No. 25 Michigan State in East Lansing, Mich.

The Wolverines (12-9, 2-6 Big Ten) had lost six straight games this season and 11 in a row at Michigan State. The Spartans (12-8, 4-4) have lost three straight.

Another ranked Big Ten team lost Thursday as No. 20 Illinois fell at Indiana, 52-49. The Hoosiers (11-10, 2-6 Big Ten) ended a 19-game losing streak against ranked opponents. Mike Davis had 14 points for the Illini (14-7, 4-4), which has lost four of five.

Elsewhere in college basketball, Seth Curry scored a season-high 20 points in his return to Duke's starting lineup, leading the third-ranked Blue Devils (19-1, 6-1 ACC) past Boston College, 84-68. Nolan Smith finished with 28 points for Duke. BC fell to 14-7, 4-3.

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Bergmeister on pole for Rolex 24

Jorg Bergmeister will start from the pole in the Rolex 24 at Daytona, putting him out front in the grueling and prestigious 24-hour race.

Bergmeister's final lap on the 3.56-mile road course was the fastest, crossing the line in 1 minute, 40.099 seconds and edging Max Angelelli in the DP class.

Angelelli (1:40.133) will start second, following by Scott Pruett, Ryan Dalziel and Scott Dixon.

From News and wire service reports.

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