Hilary Knight, Kendall Coyne Schofield lead world women’s hockey championship roster

Ice Hockey - Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics Day 10
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Olympic champions Hilary Knight, Kendall Coyne Schofield, Amanda Kessel and Maddie Rooney headline the U.S. roster for the world women’s hockey championship that starts Aug. 25 in Denmark.

It marks the first women’s worlds held in an Olympic year as the International Ice Hockey Federation made the tournament annual, as it has been for the men since 1989.

Canada beat the U.S. in the final of the Olympics in February and last August’s worlds, making this the U.S.’ longest gold-medal drought in more than a decade.

Knight, 33 and the lone player on the team born in the 1980s, gets her third chance to break her tie with retired defender Kacey Bellamy for the most gold medals in U.S. hockey history. Both have nine between the Olympics and world championships.

Knight already holds the U.S. record for world championship appearances at 11.

Notable absences: forward Brianna Decker, who broke her left fibula and suffered many torn ankle ligaments in a collision in an Olympic game.

Emily Matheson, a 2018 Olympic defender who did not make the team in her return from June 2021 childbirth.

And goalie Alex Cavallini, who is pregnant and plans to return to the national team after childbirth later this year or early next year. Cavallini played most of the Olympics, including the entire gold-medal game, after tearing an MCL on Jan. 14.

The new U.S. head coach is John Wroblewski, most recently an AHL coach, who succeeded Olympic coach Joel Johnson. USA Hockey did not provide a reason for Johnson’s departure in the May 31 announcement. None of the last five Olympic head coaches returned for the first world championship of the following Olympic cycle.

Wroblewski tested positive for COVID-19 on Saturday, USA Hockey spokeswoman Melissa Katz said, and will coach remotely while spending a 10-day stretch in self-isolation. Should he be cleared, Wroblewski would travel separately to join the team in Denmark, where the U.S. opens the 10-nation tournament against Japan on Aug. 25.

“The COVID news is unfortunate, but I’ll look at the positive side. I got a great look at the overall picture this week, and now I get to remove myself and process it while still making team decisions,” Wroblewski wrote in a text to The Associated Press.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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2022 U.S. Women’s Hockey World Championship Roster

Goalies
Aerin Frankel
Nicole Hensley
Maddie Rooney

Defense
Cayla Barnes
Jincy Dunne
Rory Guilday
Savannah Harmon
Caroline Harvey
Megan Keller
Lee Stecklein

Forwards
Hannah Bilka
Hannah Brandt
Alex Carpenter
Jesse Compher
Kendall Coyne Schofield
Lacey Eden
Taylor Heise
Amanda Kessel
Hilary Knight
Kelly Pannek
Abby Roque
Hayley Scamurra
Grace Zumwinkle

Kenenisa Bekele still eyes Eliud Kipchoge’s marathon world record, but a duel must wait

Kenenisa Bekele
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LONDON — Kenenisa Bekele made headlines last week by declaring “of course I am the best” long distance runner ever. But the Ethiopian was fifth-best at Sunday’s London Marathon, finishing 74 seconds behind Kenya’s Amos Kipruto.

Bekele, 40, clocked 2:05:53, the fastest-ever marathon by a runner 40 years or older. He was with the lead pack until being dropped in the 21st mile.

But Bekele estimated he could have run 90 to 120 seconds faster had he not missed parts of six weeks of training with hip and joint injuries.

“I expect better even if the preparation is short,” he said. “I know my talent and I know my capacity, but really I couldn’t achieve what I expect.”

Bekele is the second-fastest marathoner in history behind Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge, who broke his own world record by clocking 2:01:09 at the Berlin Marathon last week.

“I am happy when I see Eliud Kipchoge run that time,” Bekele said. “It motivates all athletes who really expect to do the same thing.”

LONDON MARATHON: Results

Bekele’s best time was within two seconds of Kipchoge’s previous world record (2:01:39). He described breaking Kipchoge’s new mark as the “main goal” for the rest of his career.

“Yes, I hope, one day it will happen, of course,” Bekele said. “With good preparation, I don’t know when, but we will see one more time.”

Nobody has won more London Marathons than Kipchoge, a four-time champion who set the course record (2:02:37) in 2019. But the two-time Olympic marathon champion did not run this year in London, as elite marathoners typically choose to enter one race each spring and fall.

Bekele does not know which race he will enter in the spring. But it will not be against Kipchoge.

“I need to show something first,” Bekele said. “I need to run a fast time. I have to check myself. This is not enough.”

Kipchoge will try to become the first runner to win three Olympic marathon titles at the Paris Games. Bekele, who will be 42 in 2024, has not committed to trying to qualify for the Ethiopian team.

“There’s a long time to go before Paris,” Bekele said. “At this moment I am not decided. I have to show something.”

So who is the greatest long distance runner ever?

Bekele can make a strong case on the track:

Bekele
Four Olympic medals (three gold)
Six World Championship medals (five gold)
Former 5000m and 10,000m world-record holder

Kipchoge
Two Olympic medals
Two World Championship medals (one gold)

But Kipchoge can make a strong case on the pavement:

Bekele
Second-fastest marathoner in history
Two World Marathon Major victories

Kipchoge
Four of the five best marathon times in history
Two-time Olympic marathon champion
12 World Marathon Major victories

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Yalemzerf Yehualaw, Amos Kipruto win London Marathon

Yalemzerf Yehualaw
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Ethiopian Yalemzerf Yehualaw became the youngest female runner to win the London Marathon, while Kenyan Amos Kipruto earned the biggest victory of his career in the men’s race.

Yehualaw, 23, clocked 2:17:26, prevailing by 41 seconds over 2021 London champ Joyciline Jepkosgei of Kenya.

Yehualaw tripped and fell over a speed bump around the 20-mile mark. She quickly rejoined the lead pack, then pulled away from Jepkosgei by running the 24th mile in a reported 4:43, which converts to 2:03:30 marathon pace; the women’s world record is 2:14:04.

Yehualaw and Jepkosgei were pre-race favorites after world record holder Brigid Kosgei of Kenya withdrew Monday with a right hamstring injury.

On April 24, Yehualaw ran the fastest women’s debut marathon in history, a 2:17:23 to win in Hamburg, Germany.

She has joined the elite tier of female marathoners, a group led by Kenyan Peres Jepchirchir, the reigning Olympic, New York City and Boston champion. Another Ethiopian staked a claim last week when Tigist Assefa won Berlin in 2:15:37, shattering Yehualaw’s national record.

Joan Benoit Samuelson, the first Olympic women’s marathon champion in 1984, finished Sunday’s race in 3:20:20 at age 65.

LONDON MARATHON: Results

Kipruto, 30, won the men’s race in 2:04:39. He broke free from the leading group in the 25th mile and crossed the finish line 33 seconds ahead of Ethiopian Leul Gebresilase, who said he had hamstring problems.

Kipruto, one of the pre-race favorites, had never won a major marathon but did finish second behind world record holder Eliud Kipchoge in Tokyo (2022) and Berlin (2018) and third at the world championships (2019) and Tokyo (2018).

Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele, the second-fastest marathoner in history, was fifth after being dropped in the 21st mile. His 2:05:53 was the fastest-ever marathon by a runner 40 years or older. Bekele ran his personal best at the 2019 Berlin Marathon — 2:01:41 — and has not run within four minutes of that time since.

The major marathon season continues next Sunday with the Chicago Marathon, headlined by a women’s field that includes Kenyan Ruth Chepngetich and American Emily Sisson.

London returns next year to its traditional April place after being pushed to October the last three years due to the pandemic.

MORE: Bekele looks ahead to Kipchoge chase after London Marathon

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