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Ukraine takes gold, US hockey falls to Canada

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 21, 2014 at 6:46 pm •  Published: February 21, 2014
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SOCHI, Russia (AP) — Four Ukrainian women gave their politically torn country some good news at the Sochi Games on Friday, and Canada delivered more bad news to the United States — yet another Olympic hockey defeat.

As government and opposition leaders worked to end the months-long Ukrainian crisis that erupted in deadly violence this week, the Ukraine women's 4x6-kilometer biathlon relay team won the nation's first gold medal in two decades.

The four women celebrated with a Ukrainian flag as lawmakers back home paused to mark the occasion.

"Great proof of how sport can unite the nation," Sergei Bubka, the pole vault great and leader of the Ukraine Olympic Committee, wrote on Twitter.

There were no celebrations for the U.S. hockey team, with Canada winning 1-0 and dashing the American hopes for men's gold for the third time since 2002. And it happened just one night after the Canadian women had ousted their American counterparts for the third straight Olympics.

Canada and Sweden will play for the men's gold on Sunday. The Swedes beat Finland 2-1.

The first doping cases also hit the Winter Games on Friday. Italian bobsledder William Frullani and German biathlete Evi Sachenbacher-Stehle were kicked out of the games after positive doping tests. Frullani was in the four-man bobsled race, which begins Saturday. Sachenbacher-Stehle, a five-time Olympic medalist, participated in five events in Sochi but did not win any medals.

On Day 15 of the Sochi Olympics, 18-year-old American skier Mikaela Shiffrin became the youngest ever gold medal winner in the women's slalom; Marielle Thompson of Canada edged teammate Kelsey Serwa for the gold in women's skicross; Canada routed Britain 9-3 to win its third straight gold medal in men's curling; and short track speedskating gold medals went to Viktor Ahn of Russia in the men's 500, to Park Seung-hi of South Korea in the women's 1,000, and to Russia in the men's 5,000-meter relay.

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BIATHLON: Ukraine's team of twins Vita and Valj Semerenko, Juliya Dzhyma, and Olena Pidhrushna missed five targets but avoided penalty loops to finish in 1 hour, 10 minutes, 2.5 seconds. Russia was 26.4 seconds behind to take silver, and Norway trailed by 37.6 to win bronze.

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