Hannah Kearney wins first U.S. gold in freestyle skiing

Maggie Hendricks

Freestyle skier Hannah Kearney knew at the beginning of her run Saturday that she had to be perfect and fast to beat Canadian Jennifer Heil and Kearney's teammate Shannon Bahrke. Perfect and fast are exactly what Kearney was.

Kearney completed a flip and a 360-degree helicopter while putting together the fastest run of the evening on the moguls, earning a score of 26.63. Kearney's final run helped her beat Heil, who was expected to win Canada's first gold on Canadian soil, and Bahrke, who held the lead briefly before Heil and Kearney took over.

Kearney won the first gold won by the U.S. in the first full day of competition in Vancouver. Bahrke's bronze, in addition to the silver won by Apolo Anton Ohno and bronze by J.R. Celski, gave the U.S. four medals overall, tops about all countries.