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Mikaela Shiffrin improves in her second World Cup downhill

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In her first two career World Cup downhills, Mikaela Shiffrin improved five spots from Friday to Saturday in Lake Louise, Alberta.

Shiffrin, the youngest Olympic slalom champion, finished 13th in Saturday’s race, 1.46 seconds behind Slovenian winner Ilka Stuhec.

Full results are here. A race replay is here.

Stuhec also won Friday, when she was 1.99 seconds ahead of Shiffrin, who then tied for 18th. Shiffrin’s goal for Saturday was to build more speed from Friday. She accomplished it.

“That’s what it’s supposed to feel like!” Shiffrin said, according to the U.S. Ski Team. “So, that’s cool.’”

Shiffrin is the world’s best slalom skier and a World Cup winner in giant slalom. She added super-G to her repertoire last season (15th- and 29th-place finishes) and, this season, plans to race all disciplines (but not all races) to become one of few all-around skiers on the circuit.

Shiffrin continues to focus on her goals in slalom (staying at the top) and giant slalom (becoming a consistent podium finisher/winner). She will race downhill again this season, but she doesn’t know when.

“I don’t know how many more downhills I’ll do this year, but just doing it at all and feeling that speed is an amazing experience,” Shiffrin said, according to the U.S. Ski Team. “I’ll just try to lock that feeling away in my journal and then see what happens next time I do a downhill. … I’ll be back on the downhill circuit, but I have to keep sight of my real goals this season.”

Swiss Lara Gut was second Saturday, cutting Shiffrin’s World Cup overall standings lead to 128 points. Gut is the defending World Cup overall champion and appears to be Shiffrin’s biggest and perhaps only threat to this year’s overall crown.

Shiffrin is now guaranteed to finish the Lake Louise weekend as the World Cup overall leader, with a super-G remaining Sunday (1 p.m. ET, streaming on NBCSports.com).

With a bevy of technical races (slaloms and giant slaloms) through Jan. 10, she could hold onto the lead into the middle of the season.

Lindsey Vonn, owner of a record 18 wins at Lake Louise, is missing the annual World Cup stop in Alberta due to a broken arm from a November crash. Vonn had raced at Lake Louise each of the previous 15 seasons.

VIDEO: High-speed crash at Lake Louise downhill delays Shiffrin

After accident, Olympian Jamie Nieto walks at his wedding

Ramon Galindo/NBC San Diego
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After two-time Olympic high jumper Jamie Nieto suffered a spinal cord injury while attempting a standing back flip in April 2016, he decided to set a goal for himself. Nietro was determined to walk down the aisle at his own wedding.

On Saturday, July 22, 2017, Nieto walked to the altar in front of everyone gathered at Christ Temple Apostolic Church in east San Diego – something his doctors said might not be possible.

Nieto, with some assistance, entered the church where he then married his bride, Jamaican hurdler Shevon Stoddart, exactly how he set out to – on his feet.

Images courtesy of Ramon Galindo/NBC San Diego

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Kerri Walsh Jennings dislocates shoulder in Poland (video)

FIVB
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Five-time Olympian Kerri Walsh Jennings dislocated her shoulder during the semifinals of a beach volleyball tournament in Poland and forfeited the bronze medal match.

Walsh Jennings and new partner Nicole Branagh were tied in the third set of their match against Canada on Saturday when Walsh Jennings dove for the ball with her right arm and twisted her hand in the sand. After a four-minute delay, Canada went on to win the third set 16-14 and advance to the gold medal match.

“I just went for a short dig and the surface in Europe is so shallow and so hard and there’s no give for our bodies,” Walsh Jennings explained after the match in an interview with her shoulder wrapped in ice.

Walsh Jennings had surgery on the same shoulder during the run-up to the 2016 Rio Olympics, where she and April Ross won the bronze medal. Walsh Jennings won three gold medals with Misty May Treanor.

Walsh Jennings said she is looking forward to returning to the FIVB World Tour in Vienna in one week.

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MORE: Kerri Walsh Jennings’ first choice for new partner said no