US Takes Gold in Skiing Halfpipe

Daivd Wise soars while world's top-ranked skiier disappoints
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 18, 2014 1:29 PM CST
Gold medalist David Wise of the United States celebrates after the men's ski halfpipe final at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park, at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Feb. 18, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia.   (AP Photo/Sergei Grits)
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(Newser) – David Wise won the gold medal in the Olympic debut of halfpipe skiing today, cutting through heavy snow to easily outclass the field. The 23-year-old American scored a 92 on his first run through the halfpipe clogged by wet, soggy rain and snow all night. Mike Riddle of Canada took silver with a 90.6 and Kevin Rolland of France won bronze.

Wise came into the Sochi Olympics with three straight Winter X Games titles to his credit. Variable conditions have played a part in many of the action-sport events. A week earlier, Shaun White had trouble on the same halfpipe and finished fourth. Not so for Wise, whose first-run score held up as the snow got heavier. It's been a disappointing Olympics for the US team, but the Americans essentially dominated the extreme sport events, Bleacher Report observes. It also notes that the top-ranked skier going into the event, Justin Dorey of Canada, fell on both his runs, leaving him in 12th place. (Read more skiing stories.)

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