The 2014 Winter Olympics have been as exciting as anyone could have imagined, and sports fans from all around the world are looking at the updated medal count to see where their nations currently stack up.
With the women’s ice hockey tournament coming to a close and the Nordic combined team large hill event concluding, Day 13 was a wild showcase of the vast talents needed in all Winter Olympics events.
Here are the latest medal standings and the most important results from Thursday’s action:
Updated Medal Standings
Team Canada Wins Gold in Women’s Ice Hockey
Team Canada’s Marie-Philip Poulin scored the game-winning goal eight minutes and 10 seconds into the sudden death overtime period to seal the gold medal for her nation and relegate Team USA to the silver medal.
Canada beat the United States, 3-2.
This was one of the most exciting battles in the long and storied history between the Americans and the Canadians and should go down as one of the best games in women’s hockey history.
After a first period that was all about playing smart fundamental hockey, both Team USA and Team Canada didn’t give their opponents much room to make any moves. The deadlocked first period led to a wild second stanza that featured American forward Meghan Duggan scoring the first goal of the game.
Duggan told Kevin Oklobzija of the USA Today before Thursday’s gold medal game about what the matchup means:
But it's always revenge against them. I'm still working on revenge from Vancouver. You come up short in that one, it doesn't feel good any time you lose a game, so we're obviously looking for revenge.
Team USA added a second goal from Alexandra Carpenter in the third period, but it was the two late goals in the third period from team Canada, via Brianne Jenner and Poulin, that tied the score and forced overtime.
Once in overtime, though, penalties cost the Americans dearly, and the Canadians scored a power-play goal to earn the championship victory.
Men's Large Hill 4x5-Kilometer Team Relay
In one of the most unique events of the Winter Games, it was Team Norway that won the men's large hill 4x5-kilometer team relay at Mountain Cluster with a time of 47 minutes and 13.5 seconds, just 0.3 seconds behind the silver medal German team.
The German team had a decisive lead after the jumping portion of the event, scoring an astounding 481.7 points. Austria finished in second during the ski jump, and Norway was forced to start the cross-country portion of the race in third.
The Norwegians erased the 25-second deficit and ran a great race in the second portion of the Nordic combined. The battle for the gold medal was so close that it required a photo finish, which NBC’s Greg Ferraro provided a glimpse of on Twitter:
Team Norway’s time on the course—an impressive 46:48.5—was the best of the day by far and was the catalyst to the gold medal run. Team Germany ran a strong race, but it was the overall sprinting ability of the Norwegians that led them to victory.
The Austrian team was forced to settle for a third-place finish, and Team USA could only manage a sixth-place finish after struggling on the ski jump and in the cross-country race.