Celski advances, Malone fails to qualify, Alvaraz crashes
Teresa Masterson, kxas
Feb 18, 6:45am EST
It was another difficult morning for the Team USA speed skaters as three attempted to qualify for the short track 500m quarterfinals on Friday. Only one made it.
Team USA's Eddy Alvaraz of Miami was eliminated after crashing Tuesday morning. It's Alvarez' third crash in these Winter Games. Jordan Malone of Denton, Texas, failed to qualify after trailing behind in his heat. J.R. Celski was the only American to qualify and move on to the finals.
Malone faltered during a turn early in the race and ended up finishing last in his heat. But he and Alvarez weren't the only ones struggling Tuesday. Canada's Charles Hamelin shocked everyone when he was leading his heat and suddenly wiped out, failing to even qualify.
Viktor Ahn of Russia finished first and is in a good position to become the first skater to win an Olympic gold medal in all four individual short track events.
So far, the Americans have yet to get on the short track podium in Sochi. They won six medals in Vancouver four years ago, including a pair of bronzes for Celski.
Malone, Celski, Alvarez, and Chris Creveling still have a chance to medal in the 5000m relay final on Friday.