Posts Tagged ‘Team USA’

USA Curling Capitalizes On Olympic Coverage

USA curling

John Shuster calls the sweeping. (Photo: Courtesy of USOC)

The Vancouver Olympic Centre is packed with more than 5,000 fans, and USA curling skip, John Shuster, prepares to throw the hammer. He gazes intently across the sheet, lining up his shot. He glides and releases the stone just before the hog line, shouting “Whoa,” to the sweepers as the rock careens gracefully across the ice.

Bam! Team USA’s rock knocks Denmark’s right out of the house, in a classic example of a takeout.

“USA! USA! USA!” the crow cheers as the U.S. posts two points in the third end.

His teammate, John Benton, prepares to throw the first stone of the next end, serenely gliding across the ice like a crouching tiger. He shoots the roaring rock down the sheet, as the second and third furiously sweep the path in front of it.

Shuster screams “Hard! Hard!” loud enough for the entire stadium to hear.

“Whoa,” he calls as the stone nears the center of the house.

The rock lands in the 8-foot ring and the crowd gives a hearty round of applause.

You might be thinking, “Huh?” Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Closing Ceremony Live

Closing ceremony for 2010 Winter Olympics

VANCOUVER, British Columbia–The 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancvouer have come to an end. But not before the city passes the torch to Sochi. It’s been a wild and historic 16 days for both the U.S. and host Canada. Join me as I blog live from the ceremony at BC Place.

5:30 pm: The ceremony opens with a Canadian mime, poking fun at the cauldron malfunction from the opening ceremony. The crowd is eating it up. One thing Canadians have never been accused of is lacking a sense of humor. Well done Canada, well done. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Ohno Wins 8th Medal

Short Track Speed Skating - Day 15

VANCOUVER, British Columbia–Contrary to appearances, it seems that Apolo Anton Ohno can do wrong. After it looked like he won the silver medal in the men’s 500m, Ohno was disqualified for illegal contact with Canadian Francois-Louis Tremblay. But a consummate competitor, Ohno bounced back just 30 minutes later in the 5000m relay to anchor his team—including J.R. Celski, Jordan Malone, Travis Jayner and Simon Cho—to a bronze medal.

“I’ve have nothing but green lights this entire time here in Vancouver,” Ohno said. “The process has been amazing. For me, this has been my best Olympic games of all time.”

With the relay bronze, Ohno won his third medal of the games and the eighth of his career. He’d already sealed his title as the world’s most decorated short track skater and the most decorated American Winter Olympian with his seventh medal earlier in the week. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Nordic Combiners Win Gold, Silver

Whistler Medal Ceremony - Day 14

VANCOUVER, British Columbia–What a bonanza. The U.S. Nordic combined team—which had never medaled in 86 years of Olympic competition—now has four medals in the three Olympic events.

“It definitely has not sunk in,” Demong said. “But every hour or so I get two seconds of a glimpse at that reality and it gives me chills.” Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: U.S. Ski Jumpers Win Canada Bet

Ski Jumping - Day 2

The young men of U.S. Ski Jumping, who I chronicled in a feature last week, didn’t win any medals at the Vancouver games, nor were they expected to. But they won something just as important: a bet with the Canadian team.

The wager? The losers of the ski jumping team competition had to chug a bottle of maple syrup. The U.S. finished 11th with 340 points. Canada finished last in 12th place with 294.6 points. Who knew Stephen Colbert would be so right when he jokingly called Canadians “syrup-suckers.”

“It’s just fun,” said Peter Frenette, the youngest male on the entire U.S. Olympic team; he celebrates his 18th birthday today. “Team events are always fun.” Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Nordic Combined Medals Again

Nordic Combined - Day 12

U.S. Nordic Combined makes Olympic history again, winning a silver medal in the team competition.

Coming into the Vancouver games, the U.S. had never won an Olympic Nordic combined medal in 86 years of competition. But now, they’ve got two: first Johnny Spillane took silver in the Individual Normal Hill/10km Cross-Country pursuit. And now, Spillane along with Brett Camerota, Todd Lodwick and Billy Demong won silver in the Team/4×5 km relay at Whistler Olympic Park. Austria won gold; Germany took bronze.

“We’ve been dreaming about this day for four years,” said Lodwick of Steamboat Springs, Colo., who came out of retirement “to get some hardware.” Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: U.S. Hockey Downs Canada

Men's Hockey - USA over Canada 5-3 - Vancouver 2010

The sky is falling. The U.S. men have beaten Canada at their own game—for now. And after all the hype and hoopla surrounding these Olympics games, Canada may need hockey gold now more than ever.

Team USA trumped our neighbors to the north 5-3 in men’s ice hockey at the winter Olympics for the first time in 50 years. With a perfect 3-0-0-0 record, the U.S. won its group and will move onto the quarterfinal round as 12 pm PST on Feb. 24.“To beat Canada on their own soil is special,” said U.S. forward Ryan Kessler of the cross-border showdown, which ended in the biggest U.S. vs. Canada upset since the epic figure skating Battle of the Brians at the 1988 Calgary games.

While NBC’s primetime coverage went to ice dancing, the U.S. vs. Canada game was relegated to MSNBC. But in Canada, the national obsession is primetime. Which meant all of Canada was watching the stinging national defeat. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Ski Jumping Has Talent, Not Money

Ski Jumping - Day 1

WHISTLER, British Columbia — Imagine jumping out of a 40-story building and gliding the length of a football field—and then some. In the large hill competition, ski jumpers soar for 410 feet from a hill 460 feet high in the air—at 60 miles per hour. It’s the closest thing to flying the Olympics has to offer. And the men of U.S. Ski Jumping love it.

When it comes to Olympic sports, not every team gets the fame and fortune. The U.S. Ski Jumping team is a young group of athletes gambling everything they’ve got on a dream. Without funding from the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association, these competitors have forged a program on their own, and put the rest of their lives on hold for the sport they love. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Men’s Free Skate Live

Men's Figure Skating Short Program - Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic

VANCOUVER, British Columbia—It’s the most exciting Olympic men’s figure skating final perhaps since the famous Battle of the Brians in Calgary in 1988. American Brian Boitano came out on top. Will the USA be that lucky again? It’s certainly possible. With only .6 points separating the three leaders—Russia’s Evgeni Plushenko, USA’s Evan Lysacek, and Japan’s Daisuke Takahashi—they might as well be tied. It’s any man’s medal going into the free skate tonight.

And not to be ruled out are Nobunari Oda of Japan, Stephane Lambiel of Switzerland and Johnny Weir of the USA, who sit in fourth, fifth and sixth place. If any of the three leaders fall apart tonight, one of them could move into medal position.

There’s going to be drama, funky costumes and odd music choices for sure. But there’ll also be some darn good skating. So stay tuned for the Men’s Figure Skating Free Program! Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: White Wins Halfpipe Gold

Snowboard Men's Halfpipe - Day 6

CYPRESS MOUNTAIN, British Columbia–What a day for Team USA. Lindsey Vonn and Julia Mancuso go gold and silver in Women’s Alpine Skiing Downhill. Shani Davis defends his 2006 Olympic title with another gold, while teammate Chad Hedrick skates to bronze in Men’s Long Track Speed Skating. And then, the American men faced off in Snowboard Halfpipe. Did they pull a double medal stunner like their teammates?

You betcha.

Welcome to the big show.

With four riders competing in the final, Team USA aimed for a podium sweep. Shaun White, Louie Vito, Scotty Lago and Gregory Bretz tricked their hearts out. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: U.S. Nordic Combined Makes History

Medal Ceremony - Day 3

In 86 years of Olympic competition, the U.S. had never won a medal in Nordic combined—until now. Yesterday, Johnny Spillane of Steamboat Spring, Colo., became the first American to medal in the event, taking the silver in the Individual Normal Hill/10km Cross-Country competition.

“To have an Olympic medal is something you always dream about,” Spillane said. “It is everything I ever dreamed it would be.”

“How do you boil up 86 years of frustration?” said the team’s coach, Tom Steitz. “You don’t. Everybody starts crying. We are all going to sit around tonight and drink champagne and touch the medals.”

Spillane was in fourth after the Normal Hill ski jumping round at Whistler Olympic Park. With less than 800 meters to go in the cross-country portion, Spillane surged into the lead, but Jason Lamy Chappius of France edged him out by .4 seconds to finish in 25:47.1. It was the closest Nordic combined finish in Olympic history. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Ohno Wins Sixth Olympic Medal

Short Track Speed Skating

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA — In a dramatic short track finish, Apolo Anton Ohno won the silver medal in the men’s 1500 meters. With six Olympic medals to his name, Ohno is now tied with Bonnie Blair as the most decorated American Winter Olympian.

“I’m very, very happy with my performance today,” Ohno said. “I skated a very aggressive race. I feel good.”

Going into the final turn, Ohno was in fourth place when two Korean skaters crashed, allowing him to move up to second. He finished in 2:17.976 just in front of teammate J.R. Celski, who won the bronze medal finishing in 2:18.053. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Short Track Speed Skating Live

Short Track Speed Skating - Day 13VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA — Short track speed skating is famously unpredictable, often full contact and, above all, fast.

I’m here at Pacific Coliseum watching the men’s 1500 meter. The competition started off with a bang. Right out of the gates in Heat 1, Olivier Jean of Canada set a new Olympic record. In Heat 2, the USA’s Jordan Malone was disqualified. And in Heat 3, Jung-Su Lee of South Korea set yet another Olympic Record and Team USA’s J.R. Celski qualified for the semi-finals. Now, Heat 4 is underway.

But we’re waiting for the legendary Apolo Anton Ohno to take the ice. He’s going for his sixth Olympic medal. If he succeeds, he’ll break the record for most medals won by an American man in the Winter Olympics.

Will he or won’t he? Stay tuned! Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Long Track Speed Skating Live

winter olympics, speedskating, speed skating, Vancouver Olympics

Men’s 5000m speed skating. (Photo: Karla Bruning)

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA — This is what the Colbert Nation has been waiting for at the Winter Olympics: The U.S. Olympic Speedskating team.

First up on the track is the men’s 5000 meters.

“It’s going to be intense,” said Ryan Bedford of Team USA.

Competing for the U.S. is two-time Olympic medalist Shani Davis (gold and silver in 2006), newcomer Trevor Marsicano, and three-time Olympic medalist Chad Hedrick, who won gold in this event in Torino. Today, at the newly built Richmond Olympic Oval, the U.S. has its first shot at gold with a deep field of skaters. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

Winter Olympics: Live from the Opening Ceremony

Winter Olympics, opening ceremony
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA — “I feel like I want to explode,” said David Morris, a freestyle skier from Australia, about marching in the opening ceremony. “I want to run around and hug everyone.

Um, my sentiments exactly.

No, I’m not marching. That’s way more amazing than what I’m doing. But sitting in a press tribune minutes from the start of the 2010 Winter Olympics opening ceremony in Vancouver is still pretty darn exciting. Read the rest of this entry →


Mar 2010

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