The youngest collection of American hockey players since the NHL began supplying the talent for the 1998 Nagano Games opened this tournament with a workmanlike 3-1 victory over Switzerland on Tuesday. Bobby Ryan scored late in the first period, and David Backes and Ryan Malone added goals in the second period to help the United States to the victory. Later, excitement filled the arena when Sidney Crosby and the Canadian team took the ice. Jarome Iginla got things going early in the second period for the Canadian team, and it was like a dam bursting. Iginla and Dany Heatley scored twice and Crosby had three assists on the way to a convincing 8-0 victory over Norway.
American Jenny Potter scored three goals for her second straight hat trick, captain Natalie Darwitz totaled five points and the United States routed Russia 13-0 to earn a spot in next week’s playoffs.
Men’s figure skating
Russian Evgeni Plushenko won the short program, the first step toward defending his title. Plushenko’s 90.85 points beat world champion Evan Lysacek of the United States.
With American Lindsey Jacobellis out of the finals, Maelle Ricker easily won Canada’s second gold. Jacobellis won the consolation race to go down as the fifth-place finisher.
Andy Kapp took out two United States stones with his second-to-last throw to secure a 7-5 win for the Germans in their Olympic curling opener. Norway later defeated the U.S. team 6-5. On the women’s side, Japan rallied back from an early three-point deficit, beating the Americans 9-7 in a dramatic finish that brought out an official measurement.
South Korea’s Lee Sang-hwa knocked off German world-record holder Jenny Wolf and China’s Wang Beixing, two overwhelming favorites, in the women’s 500 meters.
Tatjana Huefner finished four runs in 2 minutes, 46.52 seconds to give Germany its ninth women’s singles luge gold in 13 Olympic competitions. Top U.S. hopeful Erin Hamlin, the 2009 world champion, was 16th.
Bjorn Ferry won the men’s 12.5-kilometer pursuit, giving Sweden its first gold medal in biathlon in 50 years. Jeremy Teela was the top U.S. finisher at 24th. Magdalena Neuner of Germany and Anastazia Kuzmina of Slovakia finished 1-2 in the women’s 10-kilometer pursuit. Sara Studebaker was the top American, finishing 46th.
An overnight snowstorm forced ski officials to postpone the men’s super-combined race for nearly a week and call off women’s downhill training, the latest shuffling to the Alpine calendar. Mead graduate Will Brandenburg is among those waiting to compete in the men’s super-combined event, now set for Sunday.