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Celski qualifies for 3rd event at Sochi Olympics

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 5, 2014 at 8:14 pm •  Published: January 5, 2014
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Jessica Smith won both of the women's 1,000 finals, and she'll skate in three individual events in Sochi. She competed with a small tear in her left hip that she has deferred surgery on until after the Olympics.

Joining her on the women's team are 2010 Olympian Alyson Dudek and Emily Scott. The U.S. didn't qualify a relay for the games, leaving the American women with their smallest squad since the sport was introduced to the Olympics in 1992.

Smith and Scott each will compete in the 500, 1,000 and 1,500.

Smith is the only Olympian to be coached by Jae Su Chun, who was accused by a dozen national team members of physical, emotional and verbal abuse in 2012. He also was alleged to have ordered speedskater Simon Cho to sabotage the skates of a Canadian rival.

Chun denied all allegations, and other members of the team came to his defense. Chun, who is serving a two-year suspension, was allowed to be in the stands during the trials but not inside the racing area.

"He's helped my dreams come true," Smith said. "He's stuck by me this whole time, just like I've stuck by him this entire time. It's obviously paid off. I won every distance with his help and I wouldn't be skating at the level I'm skating without his help."