AP

Korea Olympic hockey coach takes high school job

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Sarah Murray, who coached the joint Korean Olympic women’s hockey team in PyeongChang, will coach the Owatonna High School girls team in her native Minnesota starting this fall.

Murray has not responded to a request for comment though the school on whether this means she is leaving the South Korean national team program.

Murray, 30, guided the joint Korean Olympic team to an 0-5 record. The tournament underdogs scored in three games and were within two goals of Switzerland.

Three weeks before the Olympics, the International Olympic Committee approved adding 12 North Koreans to the South Korean Olympic women’s hockey team, making it the first joint Korean team in any Olympic event.

Murray initially had mixed feelings.

“It’s exciting to be a part of something that’s so historic, to have two countries so divided come together through sports,” Murray said in January, according to Yonhap News Agency. “I think the story is great, and to be a part of it is important. But at the same time, it’s mixed feelings because it’s at the expense of, ‘We don’t get to play our full roster.’”

She expressed optimism after the Games.

“We have really enjoyed working with the North’s players and coaches, and we really do want to help them in the future,” Murray said, according to The Associated Press, adding that a possible “exchange game” was discussed to maintain the connection. “They want to get better, they want to keep learning from us and we want to help them. And there are things that we can learn from them, too.”

Murray won two NCAA titles as a player at Minnesota-Duluth. Her father, Andy Murray, spent 10 seasons coaching the Los Angeles Kings and St. Louis Blues in the 2000s.

She replaces an Otawonna coach who stepped down to focus on the girls lacrosse program and spend more time with his family.

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MORE: South Korea hockey team misses playing with North Koreans

U.S. men’s hockey team gets its most lopsided win at worlds in 56 years

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The U.S. men’s hockey team routed South Korea 13-1 in world championship group play Friday, its most lopsided win at worlds since 1962, according to USA Hockey.

Captain Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks and Charlie McAvoy of the Boston Bruins each tallied two goals and three assists in Herning, Denmark. The U.S. has won all five of its games — its first five-game streak to open worlds since 1933, according to TeamUSA.org — and should clinch a quarterfinal berth this weekend.

The 12-goal differential was the U.S.’ largest margin of victory at worlds since a 14-2 win over Norway in 1962. The U.S. last won an Olympic game by 12 goals or more in 1948.

The U.S. became the latest nation to beat up on South Korea, making its worlds debut after winning a lower-division world title last year. The Americans outshot the Olympic host 57-13.

Finland beat South Korea 8-1 last Saturday, and Canada did so 10-0 a day later. Through five of seven group-play games, South Korea has a goal differential of minus-39.

South Korea also lost all three of its group-play games in its Olympic debut in PyeongChang by a combined 14-1 before being eliminated by Finland 5-2 in the playoffs.

The U.S. is trying to earn the nation’s first world title since 1960, when the Olympics doubled as worlds, and third medal in six years. Its only title at a standalone worlds came in 1933.

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Koreas combine table tennis teams rather than play each other

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HALMSTAD, Sweden (AP) — Ping pong diplomacy is bringing North and South Korea together at the world team table tennis championships.

The women’s teams from the two countries, originally competing separately at the competition in Sweden, decided Thursday to combine their teams rather than play each other in the quarterfinals.

“When I informed the board of directors about this development, the unified team received a standing ovation from the delegates who showed their sign of support to this historic move,” ITTF president Thomas Weikert said.

The move follows intense recent cross-border diplomacy by state leaders at home. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-in vowed last week to work toward the “complete denuclearization” of the Korean Peninsula.

The combined Korean team at the table tennis tournament will next play Japan in the semifinals on Friday.

“(It’s) an important statement to promote peace between our countries through table tennis,” the South Korean team said.

MORE: IOC president meets with Kim Jong Un

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