It was another successful day for Team USA that was helped largely by one of the biggest favorites on the ice in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
Meryl Davis and Charlie White came in as America's darlings on the ice. Not only did they medal, but they also won the first ever gold in ice dancing for the U.S.
Here is a look at the total medal count from Monday:
Though Germany has jumped out to the lead in gold medals with eight after Day 10, the host country of Russia and Team USA are attempting to separate themselves from the pack in the total tally.
Along with Davis and White, the two-man bobsled team of Steven Holcomb and Steven Langton navigated their way through the tough course to take a bronze medal behind Russia and Switzerland.
With Day 10 officially coming to a close, here is a look at all the medal results and a breakdown of some of the highlights of the Sochi Games.
|Biathlon||Women's 12.5-Kilometer Mass Start||Darya Domracheva (BLR)||Gabriela Soukalova (CZE)||Tiril Eckhoff (NOR)|
|Bobsled||2-Man Final||Alexey Voevoda/Alexander Zubkov (RUS)||Alex Baumann/Beat Hefti (SUI)||Steven Holcomb/Steven Langton (USA)|
|Figure Skating||Ice Dance Final||Meryl Davis/Charlie White (USA)||Tessa Virtue/Scott Moir (CAN)||Nikita Katsalapov/Elena Ilinykh (RUS)|
|Freestyle Skiing||Men's Aerials Final||Anton Kushnir (BLR)||David Morris (AUS)||Zongyang Jia (CHN)|
|Ski Jumping||Men's Team Final Round||Germany||Austria||Japan|
Day 10 Highlights
One of the biggest stories on the ice coming into Sochi was the dominance of Davis and White in ice dancing, but it didn't look like a sure thing after defending gold medalists Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada put up the highest score in ice dancing history with a 114.66.
The American pair needed a perfect run and got one to set another world record, as Julie Stewart-Binks of Fox Sports 1 points out:
Americans Meryl Davis and Charlie White set a WR after Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir did. USA wins their 1st olympic gold in ice dance.— Julie Stewart-Binks (@JSB_FOX) February 17, 2014
Though the pressure was brutal on the pair, they rose above the field yet again and cruised to an Olympic gold after taking the silver in Vancouver.
White spoke about the grueling expectations and how they were able to overcome them in Sochi, according to NBCOlympics.com's Joe Posnanski:
I guess I would say that nobody can ever put more pressure on us than we put on ourselves. [...] We’ve been putting pressure on ourselves since we were very young. We are both so competitive. We are both harder on ourselves, I think, than anyone could ever be on us.
Rather than crumbling under the pressure like many of their American teammates who came in as gold favorites and failed to medal—see Shani Davis and Shaun White—Davis and White were sensational on the ice and came through for the Americans.
Will the U.S. medal in the figure skating women's individual event?
The success of the ice dancing duo could potentially be a lead-in for the final figure skating event when the women hit the ice. With both Gracie Gold and Ashley Wagner hoping to at least medal, the odds still look stacked against them.
With Julia Lipnitskaia dominating in the team event to defeat Mao Asada of Japan, both are perceived to be favorites to stand on the podium. But with Yuna Kim of South Korea waiting in the wings to steal the stage and defend her gold medal from Vancouver, this could be the final medal for Team USA.
As for the rest of Team USA, just one lone medal could come for the bobsled team of Holcomb and Langton with the bronze after a great run on the fourth heat. But they would be easily outdone by another team out of the host country of Russia in Alexander Zubkov and Alexey Voevoda.
R.J. Rico of NBCOlympics.com reported the final when it became official for Zubkov and Voevoda:
And that's it for the two-man bobsled competition. Russia's Zubkov runs away with the gold. Swiss Hefti second, Steven Holcomb third.— R.J. Rico (@RJRico62) February 17, 2014
While the U.S. didn't come away with a gold medal, it was still a historic outcome for the two-man team. It was the first time in over six decades that an American tandem stood on the podium in the event, as Nick Mathews of the Houston Chronicle reports:
The United States' Holcomb and Langton earning a bronze medal was the nation's first medal in two-man bobsled since 1952.— Nick Mathews (@Nick_Mathews) February 17, 2014
In another interesting story coming out of the action, the Chinese men's freestyle skiing aerials team was denied of a gold medal despite being perceived as the favorites coming in.
Instead, Anton Kushnir of Belarus shocked the field with an impressive run that catapulted him to the top of the podium, as Skyler Wilder of NBCOlympics.com notes:
Belarus only has six medals in Sochi thus far, but five of those are gold. With his win in the aerials, Kushnir locked in just as many gold medals for the Belarusians as both Russia and the U.S. at the top of the medal tally.
Along with Kushnir, Darya Domracheva also secured a second gold for Belarus in the women's biathlon 12.5-kilometer mass start event.
The Germans also took home the top spot in the ski jumping team event to solidify the top spot in golds, but are well behind in the total count for medals.
While the Americans weren't able to medal in Day 10 in freestyle skiing, they will highlight a field in Day 11 during the halfpipe final. David Wise is coming off a gold-medal run in the 2014 Winter X-Games and is one of the favorites coming in.
Wise tweeted about the event leading up to his performance on Tuesday in Sochi:
Tomorrow my teammates and I get our shot at the Olympic halfpipe. Watch finals live at 9:30 AM PST. Qualis at 5:45 http://t.co/g3IeYftnfH— David Wise (@mrDavidWise) February 17, 2014
Along with the freestyle skiing halfpipe final, six other events will hand out medals and could have a handful of Americans on the podium, including the men's snowboard cross final and alpine skiing women's giant slalom final.
With the 2014 Winter Olympics quickly winding down, which country ultimately wins the medal tally will come down to which one sets itself apart in the final events.
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