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Stars Dance To Season Finale

In this photo released by ABC, Cheryl Burke, left, and Gilles Marini perform on Dancing with the Stars Monday, May 4, 2009, in Los Angeles. Marini may be the front-runner for the "Dancing With the Stars" mirrorball trophy after earning a perfect score of 60 points from judges Monday May 11, 2009, for his two dances in the semifinal round. (AP Photo/ABC, Kelsey McNeal) ** NO SALES
AP Photo/ABC, Kelsey McNeal
Let the championship dance-off begin.

Shawn Johnson and Gilles Marini came into Tuesday night's "Dancing With the Stars" season finale tied with 58 points. Fellow finalist Melissa Rycroft was two points behind with 56. All want to win the ABC show's coveted mirror-ball trophy, which host Tom Bergeron described as "18 inches of sparkly splendor."

Viewer votes are combined with judges' scores to determine which celebrity takes home the trophy.

Marini, who appeared in the "Sex and the City" movie, says he already has a place for the show's big prize.

"I made a little shelf in (my daughter's) room," he said. "So hopefully we can put it there."

Marini has topped the judges' leaderboard for weeks. He earned a perfect score of 30 for his paso doble on Monday's show, but said he is "by far the underdog."

"The first time I ever danced was Feb. 9," he said.

Marini and professional partner Cheryl Burke earned 28 points for their freestyle dance.

Johnson, an Olympic gymnast and the show's youngest competitor ever at 17, called the trophy "my new gold medal."

Winning "would mean the world to me," she said Monday. Her freestyle dance earned a perfect score of 30.

"I've worked so hard for this and overcome so many fears," she said. "I was scared to do this. I wasn't sure if I would be able to do it and prove to everybody that I'm more than just a gymnast."

Johnson and professional partner Mark Ballas earned 28 points for their paso doble.

Rycroft, who gained fame when she was proposed to - then dumped

on "The Bachelor," said her 11 weeks on the show have been such a whirlwind, it took awhile for her to acknowledge that she wants the "Dancing" crown.

"I felt bad saying that," she said. "Weird as it sounds, I still almost feel like I don't deserve to be here."

Rycroft and professional partner Tony Dovolani collected 29 points for their paso doble and 27 for their freestyle dance.