Bode Miller

Tough day for Ligety, Miller as Mario Matt wins Val d’Isere slalom

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Ted Ligety and Bode Miller didn’t take any World Cup points from two races in Val d’Isere, France, this weekend, failing to qualify for the second run in Sunday’s slalom.

The Americans went one-two in last Sunday’s giant slalom in Beaver Creek, Colo., but neither was among the top 30 skiers Saturday or Sunday at the Stade Olympique de Bellevarde course.

Ligety was 39th in the first run Sunday. Miller skied off the course. Both had failed to finish the first run in the giant slalom Saturday.

“It was tough conditions where it was very hard snow but very grippy,” U.S. men’s Alpine coach Sasha Rearick said. “We’ve been training on ice getting ready for Val d’Isere and we didn’t make that transition very well today. So that’s something we’ve got to work on in the future.”

Instead, Austrian Mario Matt won his 15th career World Cup race (14th slalom) with a two-run time of 1 minute, 44.59 seconds. Swede Mattias Hargin was second, .53 behind. Italy’s Patrick Thaler took third.

Matt, 34, became the oldest man to win a World Cup slalom race, according to Infostrada.

“Over all the years, plenty of nice races,” Matt said on Eurosport. “I hope in this shape now, I can have many good results.”

David Chodounsky was the only American to earn a second run and finished seventh, his second-best World Cup result in 26 career races.

Austrian Marcel Hirscher, the reigning world and World Cup slalom champion, failed to qualify for the second run. That snapped a 10-race podium streak in slalom.

The Alpine skiing World Cup continues with a super-G and a downhill in Val Gardena, Italy, on Friday and Saturday.

Val d’Isere Slalom
1. Mario Matt (AUT) 1:44.59
2. Mattias Hargin (SWE) 1:45.12
3. Patrick Thaler (ITA) 1:45.37
4. Jean-Baptiste Grange (FRA) 1:45.41
5. Markus Larsson (SWE) 1:45.46
6. Andre Myhrer (SWE) 1:45.52
7. David Chodounsky (USA) 1:45.55
8. Manfred Moelgg (ITA) 1:45.57
9. Benjamin Raich (AUT) 1:45.63
10. Felix Neureuther (GER) 1:45.70

Ligety, Miller ski out of giant slalom

Ryan Lochte: Katie Ledecky beats me in practice

Ryan Lochte
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We already knew Katie Ledecky can beat the boys in practice, even an Olympic champion.

One of the many takeaways from this week’s Sports Illustrated profile of Ledecky is that she has beaten 11-time Olympic medalist Ryan Lochte in practice.

Ledecky and Lochte may rep different swim clubs — Ledecky in Washington, D.C., and Lochte in Charlotte — but they both take trips to the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., for altitude training.

“She swims like a guy,” Lochte said after training with Ledecky in Colorado Springs in March, according to SI. “I’ve never seen a female swimmer like that. … Her times are becoming good for a guy. She’s beating me now, and I’m like, What’s going on?

When Ledecky broke the women’s 1500m freestyle world record for the third time at the August 2014 Pan Pacific Championships, her time of 15:28.36 was .01 faster than Lochte’s 1500m free time at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials (one of the rare instances Lochte swam a 1500m free).

Ledecky has since re-broken the women’s 1500m free world record twice more, bringing it down to 15:25.48.

“I trained with her in Colorado once, and she made me look like I was stopping,” Lochte reportedly told media on his 31st birthday, Aug. 3 at the World Championships in Kazan, Russia. “She flew by me.”

MORE: Shirley Babashoff bows to Katie Ledecky

Jennie Finch to manage baseball team for one day

Jennie Finch
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Athens Olympic softball champion Jennie Finch will manage the Bridgeport Bluefish, an independent minor-league baseball team on Sunday and, reportedly, become the first woman to manage a men’s pro baseball team.

Finch, a pitcher, retired from softball in 2010, two years after her sport’s Olympic farewell in Beijing, where she and the U.S. took silver behind Japan.

Finch has been an advocate for softball’s return to the Olympics, which could happen in Tokyo 2020.

The International Olympic Committee is expected to decide in August if baseball and softball, among four other sports, will be added for the Tokyo Games.

Finch, who is married to former MLB pitcher Casey Daigle, is also known for having struck out Albert Pujols.

MORE: Jennie Finch, Lisa Fernandez weigh in on Mo’ne Davis

Looking fwd to guest managing the Bridgeport Bluefish this Sunday! ⚾️ #Baseball #BridgeportBluefish

A photo posted by Jennie Finch (@jfinch27) on