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Olympian earns first USA Swimming medal of world aquatics champs

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Olympian Jordan Wilimovsky earned the first USA Swimming medal of the world aquatics championships, taking silver in the open-water 10km in Hungary on Tuesday.

Wilimovsky, the 2015 World 10km champion, missed gold by one tenth of a second after nearly two hours of swimming on Lake Balaton. Olympic champion Ferry Weertman edged Wilimovsky in a sprint finish.

France’s Marc-Antoine Olivier earned bronze, just as he did in Rio. Full results are here.

“I had a little left at the end, but just got out-touched,” Wilimovsky said, according to USA Swimming. “I’m happy to get on the podium.”

Wilimovsky, 23, became the first American man to earn individual open-water medals at multiple world championships. Open-water events have been on the worlds program since 1991 and the Olympic program since 2008.

Wilimovsky just missed a medal in Rio, finishing fifth in the open-water 10km and fourth in the 1500m freestyle in the pool. A U.S. man has never earned an Olympic open-water medal.

It’s an impressive resumé for a man inspired to take up professional swimming after failing a swim test to attend a lifeguard camp at age 9.

The U.S.’ first medal in any event at aquatics worlds was a bronze in synchronized swimming’s mixed duet technical routine, which is not an Olympic event.

The swimming pool events at worlds start Sunday.

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World downhill champion Ilka Stuhec tears ACL

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Lindsey Vonn’s top rival for downhill gold is in danger of missing the upcoming Olympics.

Ilka Stuhec, a world champion Alpine skier from Slovenia, suffered a torn ACL after a practice crash in Austria this weekend.

Stuhec had become a strong medal favorite for PyeongChang after winning FIS World Cup titles in downhill and Alpine combined last season. She also won a gold medal in downhill at the 2017 World Championships, where Vonn placed third.

According to a post on the FIS website, surgery is set for this Wednesday, with more information to come after that. But preliminary reports suggest that she is likely to miss the Olympics.

“For now it looks like Ilka Stuhec will have to miss a large part or maybe the whole World Cup season, including the Winter Olympic Games in South Korea,” a spokesperson for Struhec told Reuters.

In a tweet, Struhec acknowledged that she would be sidelined “for a few months.”

The Olympics start in less than four months.

 

U.S. Ski & Snowboard mourns after 17-year-old aerials skier found dead

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Mikey Lillis, a 17-year-old aerials skier, died in his sleep at his home in East Rochester, N.Y., overnight Saturday, according to U.S. Ski & Snowboard.

“We are a family, and as a family our entire team grieves for Mikey, his own family and his teammates,” U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw said in a statement. “We’ll remember him for the pathway he was following and the goals he was beginning to achieve. Our condolences go out to his parents Bernie and Jamie and the entire Lillis family.”

Lillis was working his way to join his two older brothers at the elite international level. He made three podiums on the Nor-Am Cup tour between the last two seasons.

Jon Lillis, 23, is the reigning world champion in aerials. Chris Lillis, 19, won the FIS Rookie of the Year award last season with four top-10 finishes on the World Cup.