Tuesday’s Olympics Roundup: Strong Final Run Gives White Halfpipe Gold

The Associated Press

Pyeongchang, South Korea — Mikaela Shiffrin’s debut at the wind-blown Pyeongchang Olympics has been postponed a second time.

Plans to run the slalom, with the former Lyme resident defending her title from 2014, have now been shelved, one hour after the original scheduled start at 10:15 a.m. South Korea time. There had been three delays in hope of waiting out the strong gusts. Now the race will be held on Friday instead.

Shiffrin already had her giant slalom race postponed Monday at blustery Yongpyong. That race was moved to a Thursday slot, when winds are forecast to ease.

That creates a busy program for the next two days: Two women’s technical races at Yongpyong and two men’s speed races at Jeongseon, 30 miles away.

White-Hot: Shaun White put together an epic final run to claim his third gold medal in Olympic men’s halfpipe, slicing through the gray South Korean sky on Wednesday to post a score of 97.75 for the 100th overall gold by the United States in the Winter Games.

The 31-year-old White trailed Japan’s Ayumu Hirano going into the last of the three runs in the 12-man final, but put together a daring set that included consecutive 1440-degree spins. The Flying Tomato threw his board in the air when his winning score flashed, setting off a delirious celebration.

Hirano, who vaulted into the lead during his second run with a score of 95.25, took silver. Australia’s Scotty James earned bronze.

White is the first American male to win gold at three separate Winter Olympics. Speedskater Bonnie Blair won gold in the 1988, 1992 and 1994 Games.

Age-Old Games: It was a day for all ages at the Winter Olympics.

A few hours after 17-year-old Chloe Kim dominated the women’s halfpipe snowboarding final on Tuesday, 28-year-old Marcel Hirscher, a six-time overall World Cup champion, won the men’s combined at the Pyeongchang Games.

In a first for the Olympics, Canadian curlers Kaitlyn Lawes and John Morris won gold in the debut of mixed doubles with a 10-3 victory over the Swiss pair of Jenny Perret and Martin Rios.

In a rush of night-time finishes, Kjeld Nuis led a Dutch double in the men’s 1,500-meter speedskating final, Natalie Geisenberger successfully defended her women’s luge title in a 1-2 finish for Germany, the cross-country classic sprint titles went to Johannes Hoesflot Klaebo of Norway and Stina Nilsson of Sweden, and Italian short-track speedskater Arianna Fontana won the women’s 500 meters.

In Jeongseon, Hirscher’s combined two-run time was 0.23 seconds faster than silver medalist Alexis Pinturault of France.

In the Mix: Lawes and Morris were too good in the mixed doubles curling final, with Switzerland conceding in the sixth end of the match after missing an opportunity for a takeout with its last shot of the end. That gave Canada another two points. Seeing no way to come back from the deficit, the Swiss ended the game.

The team from Russia picked up bronze with Anastasia Bryzgalova tumbling onto the ice but bouncing back with teammate — and husband — Aleksandr Krushelnitckii for an 8-4 victory over Norway.

U.S. Women Top OAR: At Gangneung, South Korea, Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson set an Olympic record for the fastest back-to-back goals by a man or a woman, scoring 6 seconds apart in the second period as the United States shut out the Russians, 5-0, on Tuesday night.

Lamoureux-Davidson not only topped Canada’s Caroline Oullette, who scored twice in 16 seconds on Feb. 11, 2006, in a 16-0 rout of Italy at Turin, but also the men’s mark held by Carl Goran Oberg of Sweden in 1960 at Squaw Valley.

With the win, the Americans remain undefeated going into their early Olympic showdown with Canada, which is also 2-0.

Dutch Double: Kjeld Nuis led teammate Patrick Roest in a 1-2 finish in the 1,500 meters to give Netherlands four wins from four finals in speedskating at the Olympic Oval.

The Dutch have now won eight of 12 medals at the Pyeongchang Games.

Cross-Country: Klaebo won gold in the men’s cross-country sprint, with Frederico Pellegrino of Italy getting the better of a photo finish to take silver ahead of Russian competitor Alexander Bolshunov.

Stina Nilsson of Sweden won the women’s cross-country sprint. Maiken Caspersen of Norway was second and Russian skier Yulia Belorukova took bronze.

Yet again, there was no medal for the United States. Jessica Diggins placed sixth, failing in her quest to become the first American woman to win an Olympic medal in cross-country skiing.

Geisenberger’s Gold: Geisenberger is the third woman to win consecutive Olympic luge golds, joining fellow German greats Steffi Martin Walter and Sylke Otto.

She beat German teammate Dajana Eitberger and Alex Gough, who took bronze to give Canada its first Olympic luge medal.

Hot Water: Japanese short-track speedskater Kei Saito tested positive for the banned diuretic Acetalozamide in the first doping case of the Pyeongchang Games.

Saito, a reserve on the 5,000-meter relay team, said in a statement that he was “extremely shocked” by the results and has “never used anabolic steroids.”

He did not race in any event before the test result from a pre-competition sample was confirmed.

Yasuo Saito, vice president of the Japanese Olympic Committee, said the JOC would work to help the 21-year-old skater clear his name after the Olympics.

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