U.S. Olympic women’s hockey roster

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NEW YORK — The U.S. Olympic women’s hockey team is set after the final two skaters were cut — Sochi silver medalists Alex Carpenter and Megan Bozek.

The 23-player team:

Goalies
Nicole Hensley
Alex Rigsby
Maddie Rooney

Defensemen
Cayla Barnes
Kacey Bellamy — Olympian (2010, 2014)
Kali Flanagan
Megan Keller
Sidney Morin
Emily Pfalzer
Lee Stecklein — Olympian (2014)

Forwards
Hannah Brandt
Dani Cameranesi
Kendall Coyne — Olympian (2014)
Brianna Decker — Olympian (2014)
Meghan Duggan — Olympian (2010, 2014)
Amanda Kessel — Olympian (2014)
Hilary Knight — Olympian (2010, 2014)
Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson — Olympian (2010, 2014)
Monique Lamoureux-Morando — Olympian (2010, 2014)
Gigi Marvin — Olympian (2010, 2014)
Kelly Pannek
Amanda Pelkey
Haley Skarupa

The leaders are Duggan, the captain, and Knight, the world championship MVP in 2015 and 2016 who scored the 2017 worlds golden goal in the final against Canada.

Kessel, the younger sister of Pittsburgh Penguins forward Phil Kessel, returns to the Olympics after nearly retiring due to a concussion.

Kessel suffered the head injury crashing head-first into boards bordering the ice in 2013. She recovered to play in Sochi, but the concussion effects returned afterward, and she sat out nearly two years.

The U.S. women won the last four world titles, but Canada took gold at the last four Olympics, including an unforgettable comeback and overtime victory in Sochi.

Canada also beat the U.S. in their last four meetings of their eight-game, pre-Olympic series that wrapped up two weeks ago.

MORE: Canada Olympic women’s hockey roster

Carpenter and Bozek joined forward Annie Pankowski as the three skaters who made the initial 23-player national team in May but were cut in the last month.

“It’s never easy to let veterans go who are just a big part of the program,” said U.S. head coach Robb Stauber, an NHL goalie in the 1990s. “We have to go to South Korea with what feel most comfortable with, and that’s a very difficult decision.”

Carpenter, the daughter of longtime NHL forward Bobby Carpenter, led the U.S. with four goals in Sochi and scored the 2016 World Championship final game-winning goal in overtime against Canada. She played in the last four world championships.

Bozek, who captained the University of Minnesota’s undefeated 2013 team, led U.S. defenders in points in Sochi (five). She played in four of the last five world championships.

“I might not agree with the decision made to exclude me from the team, but for the 23 that were named to the Olympic team, I only want to wish them the best to bring home the first gold since 1998,” was posted on Bozek’s social media.

Pankowski was one of the last two players cut from the 2014 team.

Three cuts needed to be made after three skaters were added to the national team this fall — defenders Cayla Barnes and Sidney Morin and forward Haley Skarupa.

Barnes, an 18-year-old Boston College freshman, will become the youngest U.S. Olympic women’s hockey player since 2006.

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MORE: Full Olympic hockey schedule

U.S. Olympic, USA Gymnastics leaders set for another Senate hearing

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Recently replaced U.S. Olympic Committee acting CEO Susanne Lyons, USA Gymnastics President and CEO Kerry Perry and Michigan State interim president John Engler are scheduled witnesses for a Senate subcommittee hearing next Tuesday on reforms following the Larry Nassar sexual-abuse crimes.

The hearing is titled, “Strengthening and Empowering U.S. Amateur Athletes: Moving Forward with Solutions” and will stream live at https://www.commerce.senate.gov/ on Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. ET.

“The hearing will focus on changes made by the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Gymnastics (USAG), and Michigan State University (MSU) to protect Olympic and amateur athletes from abuse,” according to the subcommittee’s website. “It will examine recent reforms to provide safe environments for athletes and how these reforms are being implemented.”

The subcommittee held hearings April 18 and June 5 with testimonies from gymnasts and other athletes who were abused, former Michigan State president Lou Anna Simon and former senior vice president of USA Gymnastics Rhonda Faehn. Former USA Gymnastics CEO Steve Penny also attended the June 5 hearing but refused to answer questions.

Lyons and Perry were questioned at a House subcommittee hearing May 23.

The USOC last Thursday named Sarah Hirshland its new CEO, replacing Lyons, who had been in the role on an interim basis since Scott Blackmun resigned in February. Blackmun, who had been CEO since January 2010, left citing prostate cancer and the USOC’s need to immediately address the USA Gymnastics sexual-abuse scandal.

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MORE: USOC names first permanent female CEO

Annemiek van Vleuten wins La Course with epic comeback (video)

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Annemiek van Vleuten, the cyclist who returned from a horrific Rio Olympic road race crash to become world champion, repeated as La Course winner with an epic last-kilometer comeback on Tuesday.

Van Vleuten sprinted from several seconds behind countrywoman Anna van der Breggen to win the one-day race, including four categorized climbs, contested on part of the Tour de France stage 10 course later that day.

“With 300 meters to go, I still thought I got second, and then I saw her dying,” Van Vleuten said, adding later, according to Cyclingnews.com, “With 500 meters to go my team director in the car gave up and stopped cheering for me.”

In Rio, van Vleuten suffered three small spine fractures and a concussion when her brakes appeared to lock, and she flipped over into a ditch during the road race. Van Vleuten was alone in the lead at the time with about seven miles to go of the 87-mile course.

She was eventually hospitalized in intensive care.

Van der Breggen went on to win the Olympic title, while van Vleuten returned quick enough to race at the October 2016 World Championships.

Van Vleuten, 35, won her first world title 13 months after the Rio Games, taking the time trial crown ahead of van der Breggen by 12 seconds. She also won the 10-stage Giro Rosa that concluded on Sunday.

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