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Olympic Hockey round-up

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After Day One of the men’s hockey tournament, questions began to surround the Athletes from Russia. The team, destined for gold, lost a humbling 2-3 defeat to the hands of Slovakia.

And the same questions filtered into the U.S. team’s locker room. Sure, this group isn’t as strong as the Russians, but the decorated program doesn’t lose to teams like Slovenia. They did, though, as they failed to protect a 2-0 lead that they brought into the third period. The feet were lazily put off the gas, and the Slovenians stole the game 3-2.

Both of these teams responded, though. The U.S. held their 2-1 advantage over Slovakia, and the Russians thrashed Slovenia 8-2.

Scroll below for full results from the second stage of group play, and click here for recaps and highlights from each game. 

USA def. SVK 2-1

The Americans learned their lesson from the other day. Instead of sitting back this time around, they continued to apply pressure against the Slovakians and their defense, which was completely out of sorts a couple of days ago, held firm to withstand the Slovakian attack towards the end of the game. It’s that kind of discipline that gives the U.S. a puncher’s chance of defeating the Olympic Athletes from Russia in the next game.

OAR def. SLO 8-2

What a performance from the Russians, and particularly Ilya Kovalchuk and Kirill Kaprizov. Both of these two players netted hat tricks in a dominant performance that reminded the rest of the competition how good the Athletes from Russia are, and why they’re a shoo-in for the gold.

It was an important game for the Russians, not least part because they picked up some desperate points. It brought a ton of confidence back to their forwards who’ll be firing on all cylinders when they take on the Americans next.

SWE def. GER 1-0

An early goal by Viktor Stalberg proved to be enough to see off a resilient German squad.

Sweden next play medal contenders Finland, who have also started the competition perfect. Germany falls to 0-2 in group play.

FIN def. NOR 5-1

Finland avoided a scare early Friday morning when they found themselves 0-1 down. Their young star, Eeli Tolvanen, scored both goes for Finland, including the go-ahead goal after he beat the Norwegian keeper in a one-on-one midway through the second period.

Norway fall to 0-2 in group play.

Final World Cup Alpine skiing races canceled

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ARE, Sweden (AP) — Viktoria Rebensburg won her third season title in the giant slalom on Sunday without hitting the slopes at the World Cup finals.

Strong winds forced the cancellation of the season-ending GS while the German skier led the standings by 92 points from world champion Tessa Worley of France, who won the title last season. With a win worth 100 points, Rebensburg was a strong pre-race favorite to wrap up the title.

The last men’s slalom was also canceled, but that didn’t affect the final standings because Marcel Hirscher had already locked up the overall and discipline titles two weeks ago.

Both races were called off shortly before their respective starts as gusts made conditions on the hill potentially unsafe for the skiers. According to FIS rules, events at World Cup finals cannot be rescheduled.

Rebensburg, the Olympic GS gold medalist in 2010, also won the World Cup GS title in 2010-11 and 2011-12.

“It’s really something special. It’s been a few years now since my last globe. I am very proud that I managed to win it again,” said Rebensburg, who struggled with injuries in recent seasons.

She ruptured ligaments in her left knee three years ago and fractured the tibial plateau in her right leg just before the start of last season.

“Every globe has a special meaning but this one is more emotional because of the time in-between,” Rebensburg said. “I know what’s behind winning a globe. You have to be consistent throughout a whole season.”

In the overall standings, Rebensburg finished third behind winner Mikaela Shiffrin and runner-up Wendy Holdener of Switzerland.

Shiffrin, who had secured her second straight overall title last week, wrote on Twitter that she agreed with the decision to call off the last event of the season.

“Ahhhhhhh shoot! The race is canceled! But it’s really windy up here so probably a good call,” the American said.

Shiffrin finished the season on 1,773 points, 130 more than last season when she won her maiden overall title. Holdener was the only other skier to gather more than 1,000 points this season — 1,168.

The men’s overall champion also applauded the cancellation.

“If you see the wind and how the slalom gates are moving, you don’t have to talk about a fair race or a quality race,” said Hirscher, who missed out on the chance to set a World Cup record by winning his 14th race of the season.

“That’s not the important thing,” he said. “It’s the right decision.”

After the cancellation of the women’s race, Manuela Moelgg announced her retirement after 18 seasons on the circuit. The Italian veteran secured 14 podiums, including three third-place finishes this season, but failed to win a race in 283 World Cup starts.

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Declan Farmer heroics lift U.S. to Paralympic hockey title in OT (video)

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Declan Farmer tied the Paralympic hockey final with 37.8 seconds to play, then scored the golden goal 3:30 into overtime to lift the U.S. over Canada 2-1 for gold on Sunday.

“It’s all a blur at the moment,” said Farmer, a 20-year-old Princeton student, “but when it comes back I will remember this day for the rest of my life.”

Farmer’s heroics gave the U.S. a third straight Paralympic title. No other nation has won two Paralympic golds in seven total tournaments.

The U.S. also finished the Winter Paralympics with the most medals (36) and most gold medals (13) for the first time since Albertville 1992.


When Farmer made a move seconds before scoring the tying goal, with the U.S. having pulled goalie Steve Cash, teammate and captain Josh Pauls thought to himself, “This is Declan Farmer time.” Farmer’s goal was the first allowed by Canada at the tournament, the shutout streak ending after 224 minutes.

Thirty seconds earlier, Canada’s Rob Armstrong had a chance to clinch gold on the empty net, but hit the post from an angle.

Farmer tallied a tournament-leading 11 goals and 17 points in his second Winter Games. His 14 career Paralympic goals are a U.S. record.

Last year, Farmer broke U.S. records for most goals (12) and points (18) at a world championship tournament, though Canada beat the U.S. in that final. He was born a bilateral amputee and started playing sled hockey at age 9.

Cash, who stopped 11 of 12 Canadian shots for his third Paralympic title, told Farmer after Sunday’s game that he was his hero.

“He’s the best overall sled hockey player to ever play the game,” Cash said, according to

The U.S. dedicated its tournament to its 2014 Paralympic coach, Jeff Sauer, who died of pancreatic cancer in February 2017.

“Coach Sauer is watching over us,” Farmer said.

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