Recapping the Winter Olympics: Day 11
Ski Halfpipe The inaugural men's ski halfpipe competition took place in the snow, and should look great on television this evening. The winner was David Wise of the United States. His score of 92.00 in the first run of the finals could not be beaten, although Canada's Mike Riddle came close in taking the silver medal. Kevin Rolland of France won bronze.
Today in Hockey It was qualification playoff day in men's hockey. Slovenia kicked things off with a 4-0 win over Austria. Host Russia avoided disaster by beating Norway 4-0. The Czechs tried to blow a 4 goal lead, but survived to win 5-3 over Slovakia. Finally, in the upset of the day, Latvia beat Switzerland 3-1, being the first team to really get to Jonas Hiller, who had two shutouts in pool play. With that, the quarterfinal matchups are: Sweden-Slovenia, Finland-Russia, Canada-Latvia, and USA-Czech Republic.
Not Mikeala's Day All things considered, it was a solid Olympic debut for 18 year old Mikaela Shiffrin, where she finished 5th in the giant slalom. Her best event in coming up, the slalom. The gold went to Tina Maze of Slovenia, who adds to her gold from the downhill. Silver went to Super G winner Anna Fenninger of Austria, and bronze went to Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany. Julia Mancuso did not finish in her final event of these Games.
Almost the Goat Before hitting the finish line, Norway's Emil Hegle Svendsen thought he had put away Martin Fourcade of France in the final stretch and thus started to celebrate. Fourcade wasn't done though and made one last lunge to the line. Svendsen held on, but just barely. Somewhere, Lindsey Jacobellis fumes. I happened to catch the end of this live before heading for work, and to my dismay, the awesome and insane Chad Salmela was not calling the action. My only theory is he can't do a live commentary because NBC is scared he'll stroke out on live TV.
This is a Recording Today's speed skating event was the men's 10000 meters. Guess who won? That's right, the Netherlands. Jorrit Bergsma was the winner in Olympic record time. Sven Kramer, who would have won this event in Vancouver were it not for a lane violation, took the silver, while Bob De Jong took the bronze. Yes, that's another Dutch podium sweep.
Today in Curling In a thrilling match, Great Britain defeated Norway on the final rock of the last end to win the tiebreaker match in the men's tournament. Team GB advances to play Sweden in the semifinals.
A Good Start Today was the first two runs in women's two man bobsled, and so far, so good for Team USA. Elana Meyers and Lauryn Williams (a two time medalist in track) in USA1 have a .23 second lead over the World Champions from Canada. The USA2 sled of Jamie Greubel and Aja Evans are in third place, with a half second cushion of 4th. The final USA sled, driven by Jazmine Fenlator and teamed up with the infamous Lolo Jones, is back in 11th.
They Also Won Gold medals went to Joergen Graabak of Norway in Nordic Combined, South Korea in the women's short track relay, and Pierre Vaultier of France in men's snowboard cross (with American Alex Deibold winning bronze).
Medal Count The Netherlands and the United States are the first nations to his 20 medals, but Germany remains on top in gold medals with 8. Norway is closing on both top marks though.
1. Netherlands 20 (6 G, 6 S, 8 B)
2. United States 20 (6 G, 4 S, 10 B)
3. Russia 19 (5 G, 8 S, 6 B)
4. Norway 18 (7 G, 4 S, 7 B)
5. Canada 17 (4 G, 9 S, 4 B)
6. Germany 15 (8 G, 3 S, 4 B)
On Tap That sound you hear is NBC's executives popping champagne, because it's finally here: women's figure skating. The short program is tomorrow, and expect that to take 3 hours of the 3 1/2 hour primetime window. For those of us who like our sports sans sequins, the marquee event of the day is the hockey quarterfinals. Russia plays at 7:30 am eastern, while Canada and the US both play at noon. Two woman bobsled concludes tomorrow, while the men get their shot at the giant slalom course. The US has Ted Ligety and Bode Miller in that one. Curling has its semifinals in both tournaments. The women are at 5:00 am eastern with Great Britain-Canada and Sweden-Switzerland. The men are up at 10:00 am with Sweden-Great Britain and Canada-China. Medals will also be awarded in biathlon (the first ever mixed relay), cross country (men's and women's team sprint), snowboarding (men's and women's parallel giant slalom), and speed skating (women's 5000 meters).