SOCHI DAILY NEWS: Saturday Feb. 8

2014-02-07 15:48

It was an emotional evening for the 94 Team USA skiers and snowboarders, led by six time Olympian Todd Lodwick who proudly waved the red, white and blue coming into the Fisht Stadium. An electrifying Opening Ceremony plus a passionate speech from new IOC President Thomas Bach created an amazing atmosphere to kickoff the Games. Medal rounds begin on Saturday.


  • Bode Miller and Stacey Cook led the U.S. Ski Team each finishing sixth in the second official downhill training runs.
  • Steven Nyman and Travis Ganong tied for 18th. Jared Goldberg was 22nd and Erik Fisher 23rd.
  • Miller, Ganong, Sullivan and Nyman will start the 2014 Olympic downhill. Nyman earned the final discretionary spot following an 18th place finish in Friday's training run.
  • Julia Mancuso finished 10th in the women's race. Rookie Jackie Wiles was 12th, Laurenne Ross 23rd and Leanne Smith 36th.
  • The women's downhill starters will be determined Saturday after the third training run. Julia Mancuso and Cook have secured their starts. Laurenne Ross, Leanne Smith and Jackie Wiles vie for the final two. 
  • Men's medal competition opens Sunday with downhill. Women open medal action Monday with super combined.

Steven Nyman
I’ve never worked harder and I’ve never been in better shape. I just kept believing in myself and worked to convince myself this was possible. 

Jackie Wiles
The training run tomorrow will be the test. We’ll see who steps up then and that will decide. It’s unreal. I keep having to pinch myself. I can’t believe I’m here right now. It’s crazy. Last year at this time, I wasn’t even on the team. I’m trying to take it all in.


  • U.S. athletes are preparing for the women’s skiathlon Saturday. 
  • The race event consists of 7.5k of classic technique followed by 7.5k of freestyle technique.
  • Starting in the skiathlon will be Jessie Diggins, Holly Brooks, Sadie Bjornsen and Liz Stephen.


  • Halfpipe team made great impression on media during arrival press conference in Sochi. 
  • Freeskiing athletes officially marked their entrance in the Olympics, marching with the U.S. delegation in the Opening Ceremony.
  • Saturday and Sunday are down days for the slopestyle team, while haflpipe athletes stay in the coastal cluster and take in the Olympic experience before heading to the mountains.

News Advisory
Team USA slopestyle skier Maggie Voisin suffered an injury to her right ankle after falling on a rail feature Friday. The injury will keep her out of Tuesday's Olympic slopestyle debut. She will not be replaced.

Luke Bodensteiner, Executive Vice President, Athletics, U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association
Maggie distinguished herself as one of the top slopestyle athletes in the world in qualifying for Team USA. We're disappointed for her in being unable to start but have great respect for what she accomplished to get here. Unfortunately there is not sufficient time to seek a replacement and have that athlete properly prepare for Tuesday's competition.


  • Hannah Kearney looks to defend her gold medal in Saturday night’s moguls finals.
  • Kearney led qualifications with Eliza Outtrim fourth. Both pre-qualified into the semi finals round. 
  • Heather McPhie will have to take another run Saturday to qualify for semis. 
  • Kearney can become the only freestyle athlete in history to win back-to-back golds. 
  • Aerial athletes Emily Cook, Ashley Caldwell and Mac Bohonnon just arrived in the village and will have a few days to explore before training begins next week. 


  • The U.S. Olympic Nordic Combined Team arrived Thursday afternoon with athletes heading up to the mountains.
  • Todd Lodwick, meanwhile, was squired around from The Today Show to a press conference and multiple appearances in the NBC family to celebrate his being named flag bearer for Team USA.


  • Women’s ski jumpers showcased their sport at a pre Opening Ceremony press conference in Sochi.
  • Men's ski jumping athletes had their media day at the venue Friday.
  • The men’s normal hill qualification round is set for Saturday evening.

Lindsey Van
I'm very excited for our sport to be in the Olympics. We've waited a long time to get here. I can't wait to show everyone our sport and show more people ski jumping. I'm really excited about that and looking forward to competing.

Sarah Hendrickson
Back in August, I had a pretty serious knee injury and I kind of thought my hopes of getting to Sochi were crushed. Luckily, I had an amazing team behind me, medical and a ton of supporters to get me where I am today. It took a lot of hard work in the gym and a lot of hard hours just getting over the injury. I'm very happy to be here and excited to compete in a week.

Nick Fairall
First off, to be here at the world's largest sporting stage, the Olympic Games, is an unbelievable opportunity. Getting the chance to represent the United States is absolutely amazing and I'm so honored to be here and have the privilege to be a part of Team USA.

Nick Alexander

I love the night atmosphere. I think it's one of the better competition atmospheres to have. It's just more fun. When I grew up jumping, we always jumped under the lights, so it kind of reminds me a little bit of the past and being a little kid, so it's enjoyable.


  • Debut Olympic medals are on the line in men’s slopestyle snowboarding Saturday.
  • Chas Guldemond, Sage Kotsenburg and Ryan Stassel have one more chance to make finals with their qualifying runs Saturday morning.
  • Halfpipe snowboarders get their first crack at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park pipe with Saturday’s training.

Marching in the opening ceremony is an experience of a lifetime for athletes. Here’s what some of Team USA had to say.

Aaron Blunck (Crested Butte, CO), Freestyle Skiing
I have never felt so good to represent America than tonight at the Opening Ceremony! That was insane! Go USA!

Taylor Gold (Steamboat Springs, CO), Snowboarding
Walking into the stadium is a crazy and powerful experience. It's unlike anything I've ever seen – as clichéd as it sounds. There's no other way of putting it.

Alex Deibold (Manchester, VT), Snowboarding
I've been dreaming about this moment for as long as I can remember, and all of the hard work I've put in over the years feels like it paid off the second I walked into the stadium. Definitely something I will always remember.

Hannah Kearney (Norwich, VT), Freestyle Skiing
The Opening Ceremony is the embodiment of everything Olympic. To me, wearing the same uniform as every other American athlete and walking into a stadium designed to celebrate the Olympic spirit is the moment I first truly feel like an Olympian.

Emily Cook (Belmont, MA), Freestyle Skiing
I am so excited to share this Opening Ceremony experience with an incredible team and the world! Tonight is the start of an amazing few weeks of competition and an opportunity to celebrate the years of training, ups and downs and all of the people it has taken to help each of us get here.

Mac Bohonnon (Madison, CT), Freestyle Skiing
Walking into the stadium alongside all of Team USA is the pinnacle of any Olympic experience. The ceremony embodies the Olympic spirit and brings the entire movement together, which I think is pretty special. The only better moment I can think of is hearing the national anthem play with a gold medal around my neck.

Erik Fisher (Middleton, ID), Alpine Skiing
Very impressive. This is the best show I've ever seen. The Olympic spirit is certainly alive in Sochi.


  • NBC Olympics launched the most extensive coverage ever of the Olympic Winter Games on Thursday.
  • Every event will be streamed live on in addition to 18 straight nights of primetime broadcasts.
  • Live daytime broadcasts in the U.S. begin Saturday, Feb. 8 on the NBC Sports Network (NBCSN) and across the NBCUniversal family of networks.
  • NBCSN will present more than 230 hours of Olympic coverage from Sochi, the most Winter Olympic coverage ever on a cable network. 
  • NBCSN will air at least one gold medal final live each day through its 16 days of coverage. Most days, live coverage on NBCSN will begin at 3 a.m. ET and continue for 12 hours.
  • To check your own TV listings, please visit the NBC Olympic TV listings webpage.
  • A full day-by-day Sochi competition schedule can be found here.

Sochi Olympics TV Viewers Guide
For the next 18 days, the world will be captivated by stories of athletic success. American ski and snowboarding fans can watch it all live on NBC along with extensive network broadcast coverage. Comprehensive coverage of the Olympic Winter Games from Sochi kicks off on Thursday, Feb. 6 at 8:00 p.m. ET with preliminary rounds of slopestyle snowboarding and freestyle moguls skiing. Television coverage of the Sochi Games will feature an unprecedented 18 consecutive NBC primetime shows, beginning Thursday, Feb. 6, continuing with Friday night's Opening Ceremony and concluding Sunday, Feb. 23 with the Closing Ceremony.

Throughout the Games, every skiing and snowboarding event will be streamed LIVE on and via the NBC Sports Live Extra mobile app (iPhone/iPad | Android).

NBC Live Streaming Schedule (all times EST)

2:30 a.m. - Men's Slopestyle Snowboarding Semi Finals

3:45 a.m. - Men's Slopestyle Snowboarding Finals

5:00 a.m. - Women's Skiathlon

6:00 a.m. - Women's Jump Training

9:00 a.m. - Women's Moguls Qualification

11:30 a.m. - Men's Normal Hill Jump Qualification

1:00 p.m. - Women's Moguls




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