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Erin Hamlin named Team USA flag bearer for PyeongChang Opening Ceremony

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Erin Hamlin will be Team USA’s flag bearer at the PyeongChang 2018 Opening Ceremony on Friday, leading her fellow U.S. Olympians in the Parade of Nations.

“It was a pretty big shock,” Hamlin said, “but it is an honor and a privilege to be recognized by all of Team USA.” With 244 athletes competing at the 2018 Olympic Games, Hamlin will carry the flag with the largest U.S. contingent ever.

NBCOlympics.com: How Erin Hamlin changed the culture of USA luge

Hamlin, 31, is making her fourth trip to the Olympics. After missing out on the podium in her first two games, Hamlin won a bronze medal in Sochi, becoming the first U.S. athlete to win an Olympic singles luge medal since the event debuted at the Olympics in 1964. It wasn’t the first time she made history — in 2009, she became the first U.S. woman to win a world championship in the luge. She kicks off her 2018 Olympic competition on February 12 with the first two runs of the luge. Michael Phelps led Team USA in the Opening Ceremony at the 2016 Rio Olympics. Nordic combined skier Todd Lodwick was the Team USA flag bearer in 2014.

NBCOlympics.com: Five fun questions to get to know Erin Hamlin

The Opening Ceremony celebrates the official start of the XXIII Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang. The Opening Ceremony will be broadcast on NBC at 8p ET/5p PT, and can be seen live by streaming at NBCOlympics.com at 6a ET.

Danielle Perkins is first U.S. boxer to win world title in 3 years

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Danielle Perkins became the U.S.’ first world champion boxer in this Olympic cycle, taking the heavyweight crown in Russia on Sunday.

Perkins, a 37-year-old who played college basketball at George Mason and St. John’s, improved from bronze in 2018 to earn her first world title, blanking defending world champion Yang Xiaoli of China 5-0 in Sunday’s final.

Video of the bout is here.

Perkins was slated to fight Yang in the 2018 World semifinals but withdrew due to medical reasons, according to USA Boxing.

The heavyweight division is 81+kg, but the heaviest Olympic weight division is capped at 75kg.

The last American to earn a world title was Claressa Shields in 2016, before she repeated as Olympic champion in Rio and moved to the professional ranks.

The Olympic trials are in December in Louisiana, after which winners will fight internationally in early 2020 in bids to qualify for the Tokyo Games.

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MORE: IOC strips Olympic status from boxing body AIBA

Brigid Kosgei shatters marathon world record in Chicago

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Kenyan Brigid Kosgei shattered a 16-year-old world record in the women’s marathon by 81 seconds, winning the Chicago Marathon in 2:14:04 on Sunday.

Brit Paula Radcliffe had held the record of 2:15:25 set at the 2003 London Marathon. Kenyan Mary Keitany holds the female-only record of 2:17:01 from the 2017 London Marathon. Both Kosgei and Radcliffe, the only women to break 2:17, ran with men in their record races.

Radcliffe’s record was the longest-standing for the men’s or women’s marathon of the last 50 years.

Kosgei did it one day after Eliud Kipchoge became the first person to run a sub-two-hour marathon in a non-record-eligible event in Vienna. She won by a gaping 6 minutes, 47 seconds over Ethiopian Ababel Yeshaneh.

Kosgei, who won Chicago in 2018 and the London Marathon in April, came in highly favored. The 25-year-old tuned up with the fastest half-marathon ever by a woman (by 23 seconds) on Sept. 8 on a non-record-eligible course.

“2:10 is possible for a lady,” Kosgei said after Sunday’s record.

Jordan Hasay, the top U.S. woman in the field, stopped after feeling a sharp hamstring strain after two miles. Hasay, who was coached by Alberto Salazar before his ban in a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency case, is one of several women in contention for the three Olympic spots at the Feb. 29 trials in Atlanta.

Kenyan Lawrence Cherono won the men’s race by one second over Ethiopian Dejene Debela in 2:05:45.

The U.S.’ top marathoner, Galen Rupp, dropped out around mile 23 after straining a calf around the sixth mile. Rupp, who was also coached by Salazar, was racing for the first time since the 2018 Chicago Marathon and Achilles surgery.

Mo Farah, the defending champion and four-time Olympic track gold medalist, finished eighth in 2:09:58. He also dropped from the leaders before the halfway point.

American Daniel Romanchuk and Swiss Manuela Schar won the wheelchair races.

Romanchuk, 21, repeated as champion. He has also won Boston London and New York City in the last year. Schar distanced decorated American Tatyana McFadden by 4:14, though McFadden did qualify for the Tokyo Paralympics with her runner-up finish (as did Romanchuk).

The fall major marathon season concludes with the New York City Marathon on Nov. 3, featuring defending champions Mary Keitany and Lelisa Desisa and 2018 Boston Marathon champion Des Linden.

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MORE: Chicago Marathon results