Greg Bretz advances to snowboard halfpipe semis

KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia — Midway through the halfpipe qualifications round, American Greg Bretz has advanced into the semifinals.

The top six finishers from this afternoon’s two qualification rounds will skip the semis and advance straight to the finals. The fourth through ninth finishers head to the semifinals, where 12 riders will compete for one of six additional spots in the finals.

Competing in the first heat this afternoon, Bretz, 23, posted a high score of 71.75, good enough for 7th place and sending him into the semis.

Fellow Americans Shaun White, Taylor Gold and Danny Davis are competing out of the second heat, along with Switzerland’s Iouri Podladtchikov.

The semifinals are scheduled to take place later today (7 p.m. In Sochi, 11 a.m. in Washington), followed by the finals.

Advancing straight to the finals out of the first qualification heat were: Japan’s Ayumu Hirano (92.25) and Swiss riders Christian Haller (83.75) and David Habluetzel (81).

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Rick Maese is a sports features writer for The Washington Post.

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Dave Sheinin · February 11, 2014