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Olympics Day 16: U.S. men’s curling team earns stunning gold medal

February 24, 2018 at 11:18 AM

The U.S. men’s curling team rejoices on the podium after earning its first Olympic gold. (Javier Etxezarreta/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

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The Olympics have reached the home stretch in PyeongChang. The Closing Ceremonies are tomorrow. But first, a look back at yesterday.

The U.S. men’s curling team won gold overnight with a 10-7 win over Sweden. It is the first American curling gold medal in Olympic history. “It’s a dream,” skip John Shuster said. “It’s just fantastic.” Sweden settled for silver with the loss, and Switzerland took bronze.

In men’s big air snowboarding, American Kyle Mack flipped, spun and twisted his way to silver. He earned the medal with a trick he calls “Bloody Dracula.” Mack finished a very successful PyeongChang Olympics for U.S. snowboarders, who won seven medals, including four golds.

In the women’s parallel giant slalom snowboarding event, Ester Ledecka of the Czech Republic became the first woman to win gold in two different sports at the same Winter Olympics. She won a surprise Alpine skiing gold last week.

In other medal news, South Korea collected two speedskating medals and Canada redeemed itself in men’s hockey by beating the Czech Republic, 6-4, to snag bronze after getting upset by Germany in the semifinals.

Related: [Svrluga: John Shuster was leveled by the sport he loved. Then he got back up, and won gold]

Looking forward, there are only four medal events left.

The women’s curling gold medal match between South Korea and Sweden is up first at 7:05 p.m. Eastern time. Nicknamed the “Garlic Girls,” the South Korean squad has become a global phenomenon of sorts.  The hosts already upset Japan on the way to the finals and hope to close out their Cinderella streak against the favored Swedes.

The four-man bobsled event — an Olympic staple — awards medals tonight, too. Two German teams are in the lead after two runs. The third run is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Eastern time, and the fourth and final run is set for 9:15 p.m. Eastern.

The gold medal men’s hockey game is also set for tonight at 11:10 p.m. Eastern time. The favored Olympic Athletes from Russia take on an underdog German team that’s looking to extend a hot streak of its own. Think Miracle on Ice, Deutschland edition.

The final medal event of the PyeongChang Olympics will be the women’s 30-kilometer mass start cross-country ski race at 1:15 a.m. Eastern time.

The Closing Ceremonies will be live-streamed on starting at 6 a.m. Eastern time Sunday (without commentary). The full, tape-delayed broadcast starts at 8 p.m. Eastern time Sunday night. Tara Lipinski, Johnny Weir and Terry Gannon will be the hosts. Team USA’s flag bearer will be cross-country skier Jessie Diggins.

The exhibition figure skating gala is also tonight at 8 p.m. Eastern.

After their semifinal men’s hockey win, the Germans were exceedingly polite.

Russian snowboarder Vic Wild rips the U.S., North Korean defectors come to the Games, a Russian who bragged about being clean gets accused of doping, and check out how much faster Olympians are today compared to the first Winter Games.

When Kyle Mack won silver in men’s big air snowboarding, he was surprised. “He immediately raised his hands and then grabbed his head, perhaps making sure it was still there,” writes Rick Maese. Britain’s Billy Morgan was just a hair behind Mack in bronze position. Canada’s Sebastien Toutant took gold.

The men’s gold medal curling match was tight, and intense. John Shuster eventually broke the contest wide open, with a five-point eighth end. That essentially sealed an American gold. Ivanka Trump, who is leading the U.S. delegation at the Closing Ceremonies, was in the crowd.

Switzerland’s Nevin Galmarini won gold in the men’s parallel giant slalom snowboarding event. After a controversial photo finish in the semifinals, South Korea’s Lee Sang-Ho got silver. Slovenian Zan Kosir settled for bronze.

America’s gay Olympians hope that in 20 years, ‘Gay Olympians’ won’t be a thing

The Alpine skiing team event made its Olympic debut, but many of the world’s top skiers skipped. Switzerland came out atop the depleted field. Austria skied to silver and Norway bronze. The U.S. lost in the opening round to Britain. Overall, PyeongChang was the worst American Alpine skiing performance (three medals) since the Turin Games in 2006.

Mass start speedskating also made its first appearance at a Winter Games. In the men’s race, American Joey Mantia finished a distant ninth. To the home crowd’s delight, Lee Seung-Hoon won gold. South Korea also won a medal in the women’s race, with Kim Bo-Reum finishing second. Nana Takagi of Japan won gold, and Irene Schouten of the Netherlands took bronze.

Finland’s Iivo Niskanen won the men’s cross-country skiing 50-kilometer mass start. Olympic Athletes from Russia took silver and bronze.

With the PyeongChang Games winding down, Winter Olympic eyes now turn to Beijing 2022 and beyond. But as the climate changes, the search for Winter Olympic hosts may get increasingly difficult. In January, The Washington Post explored which American locations might be best suited to hold a Winter Games. Factors such as elevation, population and topography were taken into account.

The four-man bobsled event debuted at the 1924 Chamonix Olympics and has been at almost every Games since then. (In 1960, Squaw Valley organizers didn’t build a track to reduce operating expenses.) At the 1928 Olympics, however, the four-man event was actually five-man competition. It only happened once.


Known as the “Garlic Girls,” in honor of a common crop in their rural home town, the South Korean women’s curling team looks to finish its surprise run with a gold medal. Their rimmed glasses, nicknames and politeness have made the host nation squad an international sensation. The Swedes, however, are the favorites and will look to play spoiler. The match is at 7:05 p.m. Eastern time.

Four-man bobsled finishes tonight. Two German teams are predictably at the top of the field. A South Korean team is in fourth. The Americans, who are still reeling from the sudden death of teammate Steve Holcomb last year, are further back. Codie Bascue, just 23, is the top U.S. pilot in 10th. The third run is set for 7:30 p.m. Eastern, and the fourth and final run is at 9:15 p.m. Eastern.

In men’s hockey, a Cinderella-esque German team looks to upset the Olympic Athletes of Russia for gold. The game starts at 11:10 p.m. Eastern time.

The figure skating gala is also on tonight, beginning at 8 p.m. Eastern time. It’s a noncompetitive exhibition, where skaters let loose a bit.


The women’s cross-country mass start is at 1:15 a.m. Eastern time. It’s the final medal event of the Games.

The PyeongChang Olympics concludes with the Closing Ceremonies, which begin at 6 a.m. Eastern time. (live-streaming on Cross-country skier Jessie Diggins will be the American flag bearer.

Among what is sure to be plenty of entertainment will be a popular K-pop band and fireworks. At the end, South Korea will pass the Olympic torch to the next Winter Games host, Beijing.

The live stream will not have NBC commentary. For that you will have to tune into the network’s full TV broadcast on Sunday night (8 p.m. Eastern). The figure skating commenting trio of Tara Lipinski, Johnny Weir and Terry Gannon will be your on-air guides.

Below is the medal count at the time of publishing. Find the most up-to-date medal count here.

Below is a TV roundup for the rest of today and tomorrow, taken from our comprehensive TV guide. All Olympic events can be streamed live at (Here’s that schedule.) Times are Eastern.

Saturday, Feb. 24

3-6 p.m. Men’s and women’s speedskating, mass start golds; men’s cross-country, 50-km gold
8-11 p.m. Figure skating gala (LIVE); men’s bobsled, four-man gold (LIVE)

9:30-11 a.m. Men’s and women’s speedskating, mass start golds
11 a.m.-2 p.m. Women’s curling, bronze
7-10:30 p.m. Women’s curling, gold (LIVE)
10:30 p.m.-2 a.m. Men’s hockey, gold (LIVE)

Sunday, Feb. 25

3-6 p.m. Women’s cross-country, 30-km gold
8-10:30 p.m. Closing Ceremonies

2-4 a.m. Women’s cross-country, 30-km gold
6-10 a.m. Men’s hockey, gold

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