Sochi 2014: Day eight review – Ice hockey epic crashes Games party
Sochi 2014: T.J. Oshie elevated to national hero after scoring four times in a shootout to help US beat Russia in ice hockey epic
The majority of the players on the ice were not even born in 1980, but the USA and Russia played out another epic game of ice hockey in a game which had to be decided by sudden-death game winning shots – the equivalent of a penalty shootout.
T.J. Oshie was the hero for the US, scoring four of his six attempts in the overtime shootout to give his side the win against the hosts, who were well supported by the raucous crowd in the Bolshoi Ice Dome.
During regulation time Russian captain Pavel Datsyuk scored two goals, one either side of those by Cam Fowler and Joe Pavelski for the US to take the game into overtime.
I kept looking back to see if anyone else was going to go. I told some of the boys on the last couple ‘I’m running out of moves here’
Each team scored once in the opening round of the shootout, with US goaltender Jonathan Quick saving from Yevgeni Malkin and Datsyuk, before the Oshie show began.
International rules allow the same player to take sudden death shots, so Oshie was called upon by coach Dan Bylsma and repaid the trust shown in him by converting three of his final five shots.
Ilya Kovalchuck missed the deciding shot for the Russians to seal their fate, but remember, this was only a group game and both teams are on course to qualify to the next stage, where there will likely be more fireworks like this.
“My hands are tingling, my feet are tingling,” Oshie said.
“It was pretty nerve-racking out there. We knew it would take 65 minutes and then some [to win].
“I kept looking back to see if anyone else was going to go. I told some of the boys on the last couple ‘I’m running out of moves here’.”
Elsewhere, the hosts did have something to cheer about as short track skater Viktor Ahn took the gold medal in the 1000m final, followed over the line by fellow Russian Vladimir Grigorev for silver. Dutchman Sjinkie Knegt took the bronze, his country’s first ever medal in short track skating.
And China’s Yang Zhou won the women’s 1500m short track title ahead of Suk Hee Shim, of Korea, and Arianna Fontana, of Italy.
In the long track skating, Poland’s Zbigniew Brodka won the men’s 1500m in a photo finish from the Netherland’s Koen Verweij, winning by 0.003 seconds. Canada’s Denny Morrison won his second medal of the games by coming in third.
Alexander Tretiakov won the least surprising gold medal of the games by taking victory in the men’s skeleton having dominated all four runs. He won from Martins Dukurs of Latvia by more than 0.8 seconds, and by nearly three seconds from third placed Matthew Antoine of the US.
Sweden’s Charlotte Kalla won her third medal of the games, but her first gold as her team won the 4x5km cross-country relay, becoming Sweden’s most successful cross-country skier of all time in the process.
Pre-event favourite Lara Gut failed to medal in the women’s Super-G as Austria took gold and bronze with Anna Fenninger and Nicole Hosp. Germany’s Maria Hoefl-Riesch won silver finishing over half a second back from Fenninger.
Finally, Sweden set up a semi-final with the US in the women’s ice hockey after beating Finland 4-2, while Switzerland ended Russia’s hopes in the competition and go on to face Canada.
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