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Fourth-Place Medal

Sochi, Day 3: Sage Kotsenburg wins Sochi's first gold, downhill course turns ugly

Kevin Kaduk
Fourth-Place Medal

 

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• American snowboarder Sage Kotsenburg not only became the first slopestyle winner in Winter Games history on Saturday, he also became the first gold medal winner of the Sochi Games. He's the fourth American to win the first gold medal of a Winter Olympics. Our own Jeff Passan was on the scene to tell how a 17-year-old girl played a big part in the trick that sealed Kotsenburg's win. 

• Russia guaranteed itself a gold or silver medal in the team figure skating event with women's skater Julia Lipnitskaia turning in a first-place performance that showed the 15-year-old is worthy of her hype. A nice rebound performance by Ashley Wagner kept the United States' medal hopes alive, even if it didn't impress judges much.  At the very least, it was a nice ending to a day that started with a report that the United States and Russian judges are conspiring to swap judging favors. Our own Dan Wetzel weighed in on the strange situation that would bring Americans and Russians together.

[Related: Five Olympic stories you can't miss today]

• The downhill course turned nasty with 10 of 55 skiers wiping out on the incredible ice and another 19 passing on an opportunity for a final training run. Bode Miller, however, turned in another top training time and is aiming for a gold medal during Sunday's race. Charles Robinson has more on Miller's quest.

• The United States women's hockey team started their quest for gold with a 3-1 win over Finland. Canada got in the win column with a 5-0 shutout of Switzerland. 

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Cross country skiing is exhausting, y'all.

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(Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports)

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Here's one way to get over 19,000 (and counting!) retweets ...

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Here's what's on tap for Sunday's action ...  

Men's downhill, 2 a.m. ET (NBC Sports Live Extra, delayed in NBC primetime): Can Bode Miller win gold at the ancient age (for skiers, anyway) of 36? 

Women's slopestyle finals 4:15 a.m.: (NBC Sports Live Extra, NBC primetime): American Jamie Anderson attempts to join Kotsenburg in making the slopestyle a clean sweep for the United States.

Team figure skating, 10 a.m. (NBC Sports Network live, delayed in NBC primetime delayed): The Americans make a push for a medal as the event concludes with men's, women's and ice dancing.

Women’s Snowboard Slopestyle Semifinal, 1:30-2:40 a.m.
American Jamie Anderson is a strong favorite and will be looking to make it double gold medals for Team USA after Sage Kostenburg’s upset win in men’s slopestyle.
Defending Olympic half-pipe gold medalist Torah Bright is looking to become the first snowboarder to win two medals in single Olympics. (Watch it here)

Men’s Alpine Skiing Downhill Final, 2-4:10 a.m.
Five-time Olympic medalist Bode Miller could be a medal contender in super combined, super-G and downhill. He has recorded the fastest training times leading up to this downhill final. (Watch it here)

Women’s Ice Hockey – Sweden vs. Japan, 3-5:30 a.m (Watch it here)

Women’s Snowboard Slopestyle Final, 4:15-5:25 a.m.
American Jamie Anderson is a strong favorite and will be looking to make it double gold medals for Team USA after Sage Kostenburg’s upset win in men’s slopestyle.
Defending Olympic half-pipe gold medalist Torah Bright is looking to become the first snowboarder to win two medals in single Olympics. (Watch it here)

Women’s Luge Singles/Training, 4:40-7:20 a.m (Watch it here)
http://stream.nbcolympics.com/luge/winter/13546/?ocid=yahoo

Men’s 30K Cross Country Skiing Skiathlon, 5-6:45 a.m.
This 30K race consists of a 15K loop where cross country skiers employ classical ski technique and then change poles and skis for final, freestyle 15K segment.
Norway’s most famous athlete, Petter Northrug won four Vancouver medals & is seeking to solidify his position as one of the best cross country skiers ever. (Watch it here)

Men’s & Women’s Freestyle Skiing Aerials/Training, 6-8:30 a.m.
Aerials is high flying sport where skiers launch off a jump that vaults them into the air where they perform series of flips and twists. Third-time Olympian Emily Cook represents USA’s best medal hope. (Watch it here)

Women’s Speed Skating 3,000 Meters, 6:30-8:35 a.m.
Czech speed skater Martina Sablikova has dominated the distance skate events for the past few years.
Her idol growing up, Germany’s Claudia Pechstein who will be competing in her sixth Olympics and is seeking her tenth Olympic medal. Netherland’s Irene Wuest, the defending Olympic gold medalist in the 1,500, has high hopes for 1,500/3,00 meters gold medal sweep. (Watch it here)

Women’s Ice Hockey – Germany vs. Switzerland, 8-10:30 a.m. (Watch it here)

Women’s Biathlon 7.5K Sprint, 9:30-10:50 a.m.
Vermont’s Susan Dunklee has an outside chance in this event where competitors ski three laps around a 2.5Km course stopping for two shooting sessions. (Watch it here)

9:30-1:25p ET: Luge: Men's Singles: Runs 3-4 (Slate between 3 - 4 Runs)
Reigning Olympic gold medalist Felix Loch leads a strong German team. (Watch it here)

Team Figure Skating, 10a.m-1:10p.m.
Inaugural Olympic team figure skating event concludes with Men’s, Women’s & Ice Dance free skates. Team USA, which is fighting for a medal, is expected to feature Jason Brown, Gracie Gold and ice dance partners Meryl Davis & Charlie White. 2006 Olympic gold medalist Yevgeny Phushenko, who powered Russia to a commanding lead in the short program, should again compete for the host country. Mao Asada of Japan is another key skater to watch. (Watch it here)

Men’s Ski Jumping Normal Hill Trial Jump, 11:25 a.m.-12:03 p.m.
Switzerland’s Simon Ammann blazed onto the Olympic scene with pair of gold medals in Salt Lake City in 2002. Ammann also captured two more gold Medals in Vancouver & is seeking to become most decorated ski jumper of all time in this most unpredictable event. (Watch it here)

Men’s Normal Hill Final, 12:30-2:15p.m.
Switzerland’s Simon Ammann blazed onto the Olympic scene with pair of gold medals in Salt Lake City in 2002. Ammann also captured two more gold Medals in Vancouver & is seeking to become most decorated ski jumper of all time in this most unpredictable event. (Watch it here)

 

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Kevin Kaduk is a writer for Yahoo Sports.. Have a tip? Email him at kevinkaduk@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

 

 

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