Bloemen highlights big day for Canada at Pyeongchang Olympics
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PYEONGCHANG, Korea, Republic Of — There was more hardware for Canada's figure skaters at the Winter Olympics on Thursday while the women's hockey team capped the round robin with a big win over the United States. Here's a look at five things to know from Day 6 of competition at the Pyeongchang Games:
BLOEMEN BLOWS THEM AWAY — Canadian speedskater Ted-Jan Bloemen roared to an Olympic time of twelve minutes 39.77 seconds to take the gold medal in the men's 10,000 metres. Bloemen, also the world record holder in the distance, skated a near flawless race to finish atop the competitive field that included Dutch great Sven Kramer. The 10k was the only medal missing form Kramer's medal chest, but he clearly looked fatigued as he struggled to sixth. It's Bloemen's second medal in Pyeongchang after he finished second to Kramer in the men's 5,000 metres earlier in the Games.
SILVER SLIDE — Canada's luge relay team put their disappointment from the Sochi Olympics firmly behind them with an impressive silver-medal performance. Sam Edney, Alex Gough, Tristan Walker and Justin Snith raced to a time of two minutes 24.872 seconds, finishing behind only the powerhouse Germans. The foursome barely finished off the podium four years ago in Sochi, Russia. They appeared to get a bump up to bronze when two Russian competitors were among the athletes from the host nation stripped of their 2014 results and banned for life for alleged doping violations by the International Olympic Committee. But the Canadians were once again pushed back to fourth following the Court of Arbitration for Sport's recent decision to overturn the punishment for 28 of those athletes, including the lugers.
PAIRYTALE ENDING — Emotions were running high for pairs figure skaters Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford as they capped their career with a bronze medal. Skating to Adele's "Hometown Glory," an old favourite program they decided to resurrect just weeks ago, the two-time world champions scored 153.33 points, for a total 230.15, becoming Canada's first Olympic pairs medallists since Jamie Sale and David Pelletier won gold in 2002 in Salt Lake City. Radford called it "the sweetest (ending) it could possibly be."
GOALIE GLUT — It's an embarrassment of riches at the goaltending position for the Canadian women's hockey team. Genevieve Lacasse's 44 saves in a 2-1 win over the United States on Thursday helped the Canadians go undefeated in the round robin. Veteran netminder Shannon Szabados had 22 saves in Canada's 4-1 win over Finland on Tuesday. Ann-Renee Desbiens posted an 18-save shutout against the Olympic athletes form Russia in her Olympic debut Sunday. Canadian coach Laura Schuler said she'll have some "tough decisions" to make for the playoffs. In men's hockey, Canada opened with a rout of Switzerland.
SWISS CHEESE — Canada's hard-working, hard-skating men's hockey team opened its Olympics with a 5-1 win over Switzerland, taking advantage of shaky Swiss starting goalie Leonardo Genoni, who gave up four goals on 12 shots. Rene Bourque had one of his two goals on Canada's first shot of the game, signalling a frustrating day for Genoni. The goaltender was pulled in the second period in favour of ex-NHLer Jonas Hiller. Wojtek Wolski also scored twice for the defending champion Canadians.