Belarus enjoys banner day with two golds
It was Belarus day Monday in Sochi. Darya Domracheva made Olympic history by becoming the first female ever to win three biathlon titles at the same games, and teammate Anton Kushnir captured the men’s freestyle skiing aerials competition to complete a gold-medal sweep on the event.
Kushnir nailed a near-perfect landing after a “back double full-full-double full” jump – five twists packed into three head-over-heels flips while soaring 50 feet off the ramp and into the night sky. Australia’s David Morris finished 24 points behind Kushnir to win silver; China’s Jia Zongyang took the bronze.
Domracheva won her third biathlon title when she left a field of elite racers far behind to capture gold in the 12.5-kilometer mass start. As she neared the finish line, she waved her right pole above her head in celebration. Gabriela Soukalova of the Czech Republic took silver and Tiril Eckhoff of Norway bronze.
The race was in doubt earlier as dense fog forced postponement of the men’s mass start race and the men’s snowboardcross competition. But It lifted just in time for Domracheva’s history-making performance.
U.S. claims bronze in two-man bobsled
Russia’s two-man team of driver Alexander Zubkov and brakeman Alexey Voevoda topped the competition, finishing their four runs in 3:45.39. The Swiss team of Beat Hefti and Alex Baumann took silver, and the U.S. won it’s first medal in more than half a century, with driver Steven Holcomb and brakeman Steven Langton taking the bronze.
U.S. pair dazzles to win ice dancing gold medal
Meryl Davis and Charlie White began skating together in 1997, and on the biggest day of their career, they were nearly flawless. The American pair scored a season-best 116.63 in the free-skate program to win gold and upend their Canadian rivals, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, who took silver. Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov of Russia took bronze.
Germans out-jump Austria in men’s event
Germany’s team of Andreas Wank, Marinus Kraus, Andres Wellinger and Severin Freund stopped Austria’s winning streak in the men’s ski jumping event. Austria had won gold in the last two Olympics, but settled for silver this time. Japan won bronze.
U.S., Canada to play for women’s hockey gold
Megan Bozek and Brianna Decker each had a goal and two assists to help the United States beat Sweden 6-1 in a women’s hockey semifinal. The U.S. has medaled in every Winter Games since the sport was added in 1998. Canada, the three-time defending gold medalist, beat Switzerland 3-1 to advance to the final for the fifth consecutive Olympics. The two North American powers have met for three of the previous four championships.
Chinese curlers advance past Britain
China beat Britain 6-5 to qualify for the semifinals in men’s curling. The loss forced Britain into a tiebreaker against Norway today for the final spot in the playoffs. Canada and Sweden advanced on Sunday.
In the women’s tournament, Switzerland and Britain advanced to the semifinals, joining Canada and Sweden. Canada is the first women’s curling team to go through the round-robin matches without a loss.