Sochi Winter Olympics 2014: Previewing All the American Events on Day 1
The 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics unofficially got underway on Thursday, but the official start of the Olympics is Saturday after Friday night's opening ceremony. The Americans are involved in events throughout the day, and it is hard to keep track of everything they are represented in.
No need to worry anymore. Follow along every day throughout the Olympics to see a complete list of every American competing in Sochi, along with events and times. Check back each night as well to see complete results from the Americans from that day's action.
Here is a look at the Americans on Day 1 in Sochi.
12:30 AM (ET) - Men's Slopestyle, Semifinals, Run 1
1:24 AM (ET) - Men's Slopestyle, Semifinals, Run 2
3:45 AM (ET) - Men's Slopestyle, Finals, Run 1
4:19 AM (ET) - Men's Slopestyle, Finals, Run 2 (Medal Event)
The American men are very well-represented in slopestyle, even after the withdrawal of Shaun White from the event early this week. None of the Americans made it straight through to the finals after qualifying on Thursday, so all three men will have to try to qualify for the finals through the semifinals.
The semifinals consist of 21 athletes getting two runs each. The top riders, with only the highest score of the two runs counting, advance to the finals to fill out the final field of riders.
The finals are simple. You get two runs, the highest overall score takes home the gold medal.
It will be tough for the Americans to medal in this event because the field is so talented, but they certainly can get the job done. Kotsenburg and Guldemond give the Americans their best chances to get a medal, while Stassel is a little more of a long shot. Expect all three riders to certainly make the finals, and expect one of them, most likely Kotsenburg, to find his way onto the podium.
Women's Ice Hockey
3:00 AM (ET) - USA vs Finland
The United States women's hockey team gets its Olympic tournament underway with a test from Finland. The United States won silver in the 2010 games, while Finland won the bronze medal.
That should make for an exciting game, right? Maybe, but probably not. The United States outscored their opponents in the group stage of the Olympics last year by a combined 31-1, including a 6-0 victory over Finland.
The United States and Canada are the two best teams by far in the women's tournament, and they will continue to rout teams until they meet each other for a great showdown in the gold-medal game.
5:00 AM (ET) - Women's 2 x 7.5km Skiathlon (Medal Event)
This is not really the American's event. The Americans are searching for their first medal in over 30 years in cross-country skiing, and while there is a good chance they could come away with at least one medal in cross-country over the course of these Olympic games, tomorrow is probably not going to be the day. Norway dominates cross-country skiing, and tomorrow should be no different.
6:30 AM (ET) - Men's 5000M (Medal Event)
Much like cross-country skiing, the Americans are a long shot in the men's 5000M speedskating event. Meek, Lehman and Kuck are all new to this event at the Olympic stage, and with such a strong group of competitors, it will be very hard for them to reach the podium. The Americans have a good shot to pick up some medals in other speedskating events, but the men's 5000M is likely not going to be one of the events they medal in.
9:00 AM (ET) - Women's Moguls, Qualification, Qualification 2
1:00 PM (ET) - Women's Moguls, Final, Final 1
1:35 PM (ET) - Women's Moguls, Final, Final 2
2:10 PM (ET) - Women's Moguls, Final, Final 3 (Medal Event)
The women's moguls are the best chance for the Americans to medal tomorrow, as Hannah Kearney is the favorite to win gold in the event. Kearney had the top score of all the athletes in qualifying and was sent straight through to the finals along with Eliza Outtrim who finished fourth on Thursday.
Heather McPhie will have to qualify for the finals in the final run of qualification on Saturday before the three runs that make up the finals take place. Heidi Kloser will be unable to participate in the event after suffering a gruesome knee injury during one of her final practice runs.
9:30 AM (ET) - Mixed Team, Qualification, Ice Dancing - Short Dance
11:10 AM (ET) - Mixed Team, Qualification, Women - Short Program
1:05 PM (ET) - Mixed Team, Final, Pairs - Free Program
The Americans enter the final three rounds of the mixed team qualification in a tie for fifth place. The top five teams will qualify and go through to the final round, so the American team is right on that border. The good news is that the United States has its strongest skaters coming up, including Ashley Wagner in the women's short program.
Along with Wagner, Meryl Davis and Charlie White are guaranteed to compete on Saturday, while the official pairs and orders for the mixed team pairs free program have not been announced yet. No medal will be awarded on Saturday, but the Americans need a big day in figure skating to make it to the finals.
9:30 AM (ET) - Men's Single, Run 1
11:40 AM (ET) - Men's Single, Run 2
The Americans have a good team put together for the luge but, like so many of these events, with so many competitors it is so hard to get on the podium. The Americans could get it done in luge though. The toughest test for the Americans will come from the German team.
9:30 AM (ET) - Men's 10km Sprint (Medal Event)
Tim Burke is the best chance for the American team to make some history in the biathlon. The Americans have never won the biathlon event, and the chance to win may be as hard as ever. There are many very good and talented athletes, which adds to the difficulty. Hopefully, Burke or one of the other Americans will be up for the task.
11:30 AM (ET) - Men's Individual - Normal Hill, Qualification
The Americans won a medal in ski jumping during the first Olympics in 1924. They have not won a medal since. The Americans bring a good field of competitors into the ski jump this year, but it will be very difficult for them to medal on the men's side. Hopefully 90 years after their first ski jumping medal, the Americans can find a way to get another one.