Knierims have virtual lock on Olympic spot but want to go to Games on high note

  Alexa Scimeca Knierim and husband Chris Knierim had reason to smile after their short program.  (Jay Adeff / U.S. Figure Skating)

Alexa Scimeca Knierim and husband Chris Knierim had reason to smile after their short program.  (Jay Adeff / U.S. Figure Skating)

SAN JOSE, Calif. -- It would be easy for Alexa Scimeca Knierim and her husband, Chris Knierim, to glide insouciantly through the 2018 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, knowing they had all but locked up the lone U.S. pairs spot on the 2018 Olympic team before taking the ice Thursday in San Jose.

After all, the Knierims are well aware of the huge advantage they have over their pairs compatriots in U.S. Figure Skating's selection criteria.

"We know where we stand," Chris said. "We're very confident in that aspect. (But) regardless of whether we're the leading team, and we're supposed to go, we need to skate well.

"We can't come here and have two bad skates, get third or fourth and still be named to the team, and be confident about that," he added. "You're going to an Olympics. You need to go in high, and you need to go in confident, and that is what we plan on hopefully doing this week."

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