The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Canada's Purich and Tran take fifth place at Four Continents figure skating

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TAIPEI, Taiwan - China's Wenjing Sui and Cong Han won gold at the ISU Four Continents figure skating competition while Canada's Natasha Purich and Mervin Tran finished fifth.

Purich, from Sherwood Park, Alta., and Tran, from Regina, rose two spots for their best international result. It's their first season skating together.

"Our long program wasn't as good as we would have liked," said Purich. "But we fought to the end and didn't give up. We know we can be better."

American teams finished second through fourth overall. Margaret Purdy of Strathroy, Ont., and Michael Marinaro of Sarnia, Ont., were seventh.

Takahito Mura led Japan to a 1-2 finish in the men's singles while all three Canadians produced clean free skates.

Jeremy Ten of Vancouver was ninth, Nam Nguyen of Burnaby, B.C., was 10th and Elladj Balde of Pierrefonds, Que., was 11th. Competition ends Saturday with the women's free skate.

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