Hockey Swiss goalie Jonas Hiller kept the Americans scoreless by stuffing Zach Parise several times, but Parise finally broke through with two goals in the third period, the latter into an empty net, in the United States’ 2-0 quarterfinal win Wednesday. The U.S. peppered Hiller with 44 shots, but didn’t score until Parise’s power-play goal 2:08 into the third. They will take on Finland Friday in the semifinals.
•Canada gave its nervous nation a huge sigh of relief, jumping to leads of 3-0 and 4-1 in the first period alone on its way to a 7-3 trouncing of Alex Ovechkin and the world champion Russians in a game some thought would be for the gold medal. Instead, Russia is headed home without a medal. This was the first time Canada beat Russia at the Olympics in 50 years, and only the second time in 11 Olympics games against the Russians or Soviets. Canada will face Slovakia Friday.
•Finland, the 2006 silver medalist, advanced to the semifinals with a 2-0 victory over the Czech Republic, breaking a scoreless tie when Nicklas Hagman tipped in a power-play goal with 6:26 left and stretching it with an empty-netter.
•Tomas Kopecky’s goal 9:01 into the third proved to be the winner and Slovakia held off a late rally by Sweden to pull off a 4-3 upset, earning a date with host Canada in Friday’s semifinals.
Skiing American Lindsey Vonn broke her right pinkie in a giant slalom crash and her status for Friday’s slalom is uncertain. Elisabeth Goergl of Austria was the leader. Fog forced the second leg of the giant slalom to be delayed until today. A notable starter in the event was Marjan Kalhor, the first Iranian woman to compete at a Winter Olympics.
•Sweden’s Marcus Hellner was so far ahead at the end of his anchor leg that he had time to collect a Swedish flag to wave as he skied to the finish of a cross-country team relay, earning his second gold medal of these Olympics. Norway got silver, and the Czech Republic took bronze.
•Australia’s Lydia Lassila won the Olympic gold medal in women’s aerials for her country’s second gold of the Vancouver Games. Lassila scored 214.74 points to defeat China’s Li Nina. Li’s Chinese teammate, Guo Xinxin, took bronze.
Speedskating The American 3,000-meter relay team of Allison Baver, Alyson Dudek, Lana Gehring and Katherine Reutter was last across the finish in the four-team final, but got promoted to third when the apparent winners from South Korea were disqualified. China won.
•Apolo Anton Ohno is a baby step closer to another medal, too, winning his 500-meter heat. He has to endure three more rounds if he’s going to extend his record of Winter Olympics medals by an American.
•Martina Sablikova of the Czech Republic captured her second gold medal in Vancouver, winning the 5,000 meters. Stephanie Beckert of Germany got silver, and 37-year-old, defending Olympic champion Clara Hughes of Canada thrilled the crowd by taking bronze.
Bobsled Americans Erin Pac and Elana Meyers earned bronze, the first U.S medal in sliding after getting shut out in men’s and women’ skeleton and two-man bobsledding. Canadian teams took gold and silver.
A GRIP ON SPORTS • There were at least a couple things that happened Friday that had to put a smile on your face. Read on.
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