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Americans Ice Dancers lead Canadian rivals at worlds

Mar 15, 2013, 8:35 AM EST

Geoff Robins/AFP/Getty Images Geoff Robins/AFP/Getty Images

American Ice Dancers Meryl Davis and Charlie White skated the best short program of the year Thursday to take a first round lead on Canadian rivals Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir at worlds.

“It’s a really good sign when, from beginning to end, you’re having a good time,” White told the AP afterward. “It was one of those dream skates.”

The American pair scored a season-high 77.12 to grab a more than three-point advantage heading into Saturday’s free program, after the Canadians faltered in front of the home crowd in Ontario.

The two teams have basically traded wins at every major event on the schedule since 2010, with the Canadians holding the advantage after earning Olympic gold and two world championships. But the momentum may be shifting in Davis and White’s favor now, as the pair has won every competition they’ve entered this year, and have all but locked up this season’s Grand Prix title.

“We feel different than we felt two years ago,” White said. “Our confidence is as high as it’s ever been.”