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Saturday's Olympic Highlights

Feb. 8, 2014 at 3:16 PM   |   Comments

SOCHI, Russia, Feb. 8 (UPI) -- Highlights from Saturday's action at the Winter Olympics:

-- In all the pre-Olympic publicity concerning the debut of snowboarding slopestyle, little mention was made of American Sage Kotsenburg. He finished 20th at last year's world championships. His score of 93.5 was untouchable, however, and he became not only the first Olympic slopestyle winner but the first gold medal winner of the Sochi Games.

-- Ole Einar Bjorndalen of Norway equaled the Olympic record for most medals won in a career. His victory in the biathlon sprint was his 12th medal and seventh gold. The only other person with 12 medals had been Norway's cross-country king Bjorn Daehlie. Bjorndalen won the sprint despite having to ski an extra 150 meters because he missed a target during the shooting portion of the event.

-- Marit Bjoergen of Norway won her eighth Olympic medal and her fourth gold, holding off Sweden's Charlotte Kalla to win the women's cross-country skiathlon. The 15-kilometer race is divided into two segments, one of classic-style skiing and another of freestyle with a pit stop between during which the competitor changes skis. Bjoergen won the event for the second straight Olympics. She took home five medals from Vancouver four years ago.

-- The women's hockey tournament began with three-time defending champion Canada downing Switzerland 5-0 and the United States getting past Finland 3-1. The Canadians and Americans will meet in the final game of group play next Wednesday.

-- Four years ago Sven Kramer of the Netherlands won the 5,000-meter speed-skating race and was then disqualified in the 10,000-meter event for making an improper lane change. He repeated as the 5,000 winner Saturday and now will try to pull off the double triumph he was unable to accomplish in Vancouver. Kramer led a sweep of the 5,000 medals for the Netherlands.

-- Sisters Justine and Chloe Dufour-LaPointe of Canada finished 1-2 in moguls freestyle skiing. They finished in front of the woman who won the event four years ago, American Hannah Kearney.

-- Norway came into the Olympics having won 112 medals, most of any country. The Norwegians quickly moved to the top of the medal table Saturday with two golds and four overall. The Netherlands and Canada both had a gold, silver and bronze.

-- Although Russia did not win a medal Saturday, figure skaters from that country were on the verge of clinching a gold in team figure skating. There have been five competitions within the team event and Russian skaters have won three of them.

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