Monday Olympic Recap

Tuesday, February 23, 2010 - 2:07am

By Associated Press
Tuesday, February 23, 2010 - 12:03am
AP Sports Writer

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) - The United States won only
one medal at the Vancouver Olympics on Monday, a silver in ice
dancing. Yet there was some significance to it.

With 25 medals, Americans have won as many as they have at any
Winter Games not held in the United States, matching their haul
from Turin in 2006.

The record is all-but-broken, too, because the women's hockey
team has advanced to the gold-medal game, meaning they can get no
worse than silver. They will face Canada on Thursday.

The next big number for the Americans: 34, their record for
medals won at any Winter Olympics, set at the 2002 Salt Lake City

There are six days and 35 events left to try piling them up.
Otherwise, the big news Monday was the fallout from the U.S.
men's hockey victory over Canada the day before, including Canada
deciding to change goaltenders.

Robert Luongo will be in goal Tuesday against Germany, with
Martin Brodeur watching from the bench.

"We're in the winning business and to win in any game, at any
level, you need big saves," Canada coach Mike Babcock said.
"We're looking for Lu to do that."

The ongoing reverberations started with the head of Canada's
Olympic committee conceding that his country wasn't going to win
the medals race, a huge proclamation considering they spent $117
million over five years to "Own the Podium." The white flag
wasn't raised directly because of the hockey game, but the timing
makes you wonder.

"We'd be living in a fool's paradise if we said we were going
to catch the Americans and win," COC head Chris Rudge said.
In the afternoon, TV ratings were released, and the game was the
most-watched sporting event in Canadian television history and it
tied the 2008 elections for the most-watched event on MSNBC.
Other events fed off the U.S.-Canada hockey game. For instance,
Canada's men's curling team beat the Americans 5-3, eliminating
them from the tournament, then one of the Canadian curlers called
it "some redemption for the hockey team."

Oh, don't forget the other connection Monday: Happy 30th
anniversary to Mike Eruzione, Jim Craig and the "Miracle on Ice"

"It was more than a hockey game to a lot of people," Craig
said. "As you get older ... it becomes more and more important to

Also Monday, Germany made a big move to try catching the United
States in the medals race, tying the Americans for the most gold
(seven) and getting to 21 overall.

The Germans won the women's cross-country team sprint and got
silver in the men's team sprint and in ski jumping.
What a day to remember for U.S. coach Mark Johnson: He
celebrated the anniversary of the "Miracle on Ice," in which he
scored two goals, and saw his team avenge their 2006 Olympic
shootout loss to Sweden with a 9-1 victory.

The Americans jumped ahead 4-0, then put the game away with four
goals early in the third period, all against Kim Martin, the same
goalie who stunned them in Turin. Monique Lamoureux scored three
goals. Angela Ruggiero, a four-time Olympian playing in her record
250th game, also scored.

Canada advanced with a 4-0 win over Finland. Meghan Agosta set
an Olympics record with her ninth goal, and Canada upped its margin
of victory for the tournament to 46-2.
No North American couple had ever won the event. This time, they
were 1-2, with Canada's Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir outskating
their Michigan training partners, David and White.

"There is so much to be proud of right now," Davis said.
World champions Oksana Domnina and Maxim Shabalin of Russia won
the bronze.

Turin Olympics silver medalists Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto of
the United States were fourth.
Skip John Shuster's team got an early lead over Canada, but
wound up losing 7-2 in a shortened match. Then the Americans fell
11-5 to China, ending their Olympics with a 2-7 record.

Shuster won bronze four years ago, helping bring more attention
to this sport. It was the first U.S. curling medal at the Olympics
and the first in a major men's competition since 1978. They
couldn't build on it, though, losing three straight matches in
extra ends (which are like innings in baseball).

"We've played good and just haven't quite gotten there,"
Shuster said.
Ryan St. Onge and Jeret "Speedy" Peterson are headed to the
finals in the men's freestyle aerials - and defending Olympic
champion Han Xiaopeng of China and this year's top jumper, Anton
Kushnir of Belarus, aren't.

St. Onge was second in qualifying, Peterson fifth. Han and
Kushnir fell on their second jumps.

"I have had a lot of trouble landing this year," St. Onge
said. "To come out today and land two jumps the way I wanted to is
Both team sprints - a freestyle event with two skiers taking
turns going three laps - were decided in dashes to the finish.
Norway's Petter Northug did it in the men's event, pulling away
from Germany's Axel Teichmann. Norway's Ola Vigen Hattestad -the
reigning world champion in the individual and team sprints, and
winner of the last two World Cup sprint titles - pulled out because
of a sore throat.

Americans Torin Koos and Andy Newell were ninth.
Germany won the women's team sprint when Claudia Nystad beat
Sweden's Anna Haag across the line by 0.6 seconds. Americans
Caitlin Compton and Kikkan Randall were sixth.
Russia took bronze in both events.
On his final jump in the team event, 20-year-old Gregor
Schlierenzauer soared farther than anyone else in these Winter
Games to wrap up the gold for Austria. This was his third medal; he
won bronze in both individual events.

Switzerland's Simon Ammann, who won both individual events,
didn't compete in the team event because his country didn't have
the four jumpers needed for a team.
More changes are coming to the Whistler Sliding Center, this
time to shave the ice in several tricky curves in hopes of making
the track easier for bobsledders to navigate.

"It's still going to be the toughest track in the world. No
doubt," U.S. coach Brian Shimer told The Associated Press.
Changes came after a two sleds crashed during supplemental
training, which many nations chose to skip, opting for rest

The women's event is Tuesday and Wednesday, with the men's
four-man event Friday and Saturday.
Magdalena Neuner of Germany won't go for a third gold medal,
pulling out of the relay on Tuesday because of exhaustion.

Neuner said she is "happy and satisfied" with having won gold
in the pursuit and mass start races, and silver in the sprint, but
that her Olympics have been "incredibly stressful."
Police say a 71-year-old bus driver working at the Olympics died
on duty while driving other drivers to their depot. He's believed
to have had a heart attack.

Another driver grabbed the wheel and safely stopped the bus,
said the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.


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