BY LUIS GRONDA
Another week at the Sochi Winter Olympics brought more medals for the United States, but they are in a close race to win the overall medal count.
As of press time, the USA has 21 medals overall, including seven gold. The latest of those came on Wednesday morning, when Ted Ligety took the gold in the Men’s Giant Slalom, the first American male to win that event in the winter games.
Other highlights include the mixed pair, Meryl Davis and Charlie White, who won the gold in the ice dancing competition, also the first ever gold for America. The pair danced to the classical music song “Sheherazade” and finished about four and a half points ahead of Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir from Canada, who won gold in the Vancouver games.
Davis and White have been training together since 1997 in Michigan and their work culminated in a gold medal last week.
Americans swept the medals during the Men’s Ski Slopestyle, a new sport added to the games similar to what you would see at the X Games. Joss Christensen, Gus Kenworthy and Nicholas Goepper won the three medals with Christensen winning the gold.
Kenworthy has gained some attention during the games for attempting to rescue stray dogs from Sochi. Kenworthy is still in Russia trying to bring four puppies and their mother to the U.S from Sochi. A Russian pest control company was reportedly hired before the Olympic games to exterminate the dogs before action got underway and athletes like Kenworthy have been working to save some of the dogs.
The U.S. men’s hockey team will have played their quarterfinal match against the Czech Republic by the time this paper prints, but their game against Russia was one of the most exciting events at the Olympics so far.
In a nail-biting game, the USA defeated Russia 3-2 in a shootout. The game was close throughout, with neither team leading by more than one goal.
Special teams played a huge factor in deciding the game, with the USA scoring both of their goals in regulation on the power play. Cam Fowler and Joe Pavelski tallied the goals for the Americans while Pavel Datsyuk scored twice for the Russians, including one on the power play.
Team USA forward T.J. Oshie became a star back home after scoring on four out of six attempts during the shootout. His slow and careful style was able to beat Russian goalie Sergei Bobrovski, including the game-winning goal right through his legs.
If the Americans beat the Czechs, they will face the winner of Canada-Latvia in the semifinals.
In what will surely is a disappointing result, Russia lost 3-1 to Finland in their quarterfinal match. Expectations were high for the Russian team who were looking to win the gold on their home soil. Finland will face Sweden in the other semi final matchup. The gold medal game will be on Sunday at 7:30 a.m.
Reach Luis Gronda at (718) 357-7400, Ext. 127, firstname.lastname@example.org, or @luisgronda.