- Team USA
United States leaves Sochi with 28 medals, falls one day short of medal each day
The United States came one day short of becoming the first nation to win a medal on every day of the Winter Olympics, claiming a top-three finish on every day except the penultimate. Russia won the medal count with 33, but the U.S. finished second with 28 medals from its Winter Olympics-record 230 participants. Here's a look at how Americans fared on each day in Sochi:
The U.S. kicked off the Olympics with a strong start. American snowboarder Sage Kotsenburg took home gold in snowboard slopestyle, which was added to the Olympic program for the first time, and won the first American medal of the Games. Kotsenburg decided to go for it all and bust out a new trick - a backside 1620 with a Japan grab - that was both stylish and technical at the same time.
The other U.S. medalist of Day 1 was American moguls skier Hannah Kearney, who came into the Games as a favorite in her event. The 2010 gold medalist ended up with a bronze after Canadian sisters Justine and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe earned first and second place finishes, respectively. Kearney announced she'll retire after the Olympics.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 1
Day 2 started with more of the same for the U.S. American snowboarder Jamie Anderson won gold in women's snowboard slopestyle a day after Sage Kotsenburg did the same for the men. The South Lake Tahoe, Calif. native entered the Olympics as a heavy favorite after winning the 2012 and 2013 X Games, and made a near-flawless run in the final to take home the prize.
In other medal highlights, the U.S. won bronze in the team figure skating event, which is new to the Olympic program. Russia took home gold.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 2
Julia Mancuso saved the streak for the U.S. on Day 3. Mancuso, the sole American medalist of the day, won Alpine skiing bronze in the women's super-combined. Mancuso now has four Olympic medals—a gold, two silvers and a bronze—making her the second-most decorated American skier behind Bode Miller. She can also lay claim to being one of three Americans to win individual medals at three Winter Games. Bonnie Blair and Apolo Ohno share that accolade with Mancuso.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 3
Day 4 didn't go as planned for the U.S. American snowboarding superstar Shaun White missed the podium in the halfpipe after entering as a two-time defending champion and heavy favorite. White finished fourth.
Luckily, the U.S. had other medal prospects. American freestyle skier Devin Logan took home a silver medal in the debut of women's slopestyle skiing.
The other highlight of Day 4 for America was U.S. luger Erin Hamlin's historic feat. Hamlin won the first ever singles luge medal for the U.S. when she took home bronze in the event.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 4
On the opposite end of the spectrum was speed skating, which has served as a big disappointment for the U.S. Shani Davis had the opportunity to become the first American male to win the same event at three consecutive Winter Olympics after winning the 1000m in 2006 and 2010. It wasn't meant to be, and Davis struggled, producing a time of 1:09.12 that placed him eighth.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 5
For only the third time in American history, the U.S. swept a podium. In the men's ski slopestyle Olympic debut, Utah native Joss Christensen topped the field with a thrilling run that landed him a 95.80 score. Fellow American Gus Kenworthy took the silver medal and teenager Nick Goepper rounded out the U.S. medal-winning trifecta by capturing the bronze.
But perhaps the biggest news of the day was the withdrawal of Russian figure skating legend Yevgeny Plushenko from the men's short program. Plushenko appeared to have suffered an injury and after taking the ice to warm up, went over to the judges to let them know he would not be skating. He took the opportunity to officially announce his retirement from figure skating.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 6
It was a close one, but the U.S. escaped with another medal on Day 7 thanks to Noelle Pikus-Pace, who took home a silver in skeleton. The 31-year-old mother of two, who was 0.01 seconds away from winning bronze in Vancouver, earned the silver medal in women’s skeleton on Friday. Pikus-Pace had retired after Vancouver but returned for Sochi, and she says she'll permanently retire now that she's exorcised the demons of missing a medal in Vancouver.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 7
For the second day in a row, skeleton saved the American medal streak. Wisconsin native Matt Antoine won bronze, which was the first Olympic medal for a U.S. male skeleton slider since 2002.
The U.S. speed skating team continued to struggle, with Shani Davis once again missing the podium, this time in the 1000m.
But it was men's hockey that stole the spotlight. Playing 24 years from when they met in the 1980 "Miracle on Ice" game, the U.S. and Russia preliminary round match delivered on the tremendous hype that surrounded their tilt in Sochi. The Americans took down the host country 3-2 on the back of T.J. Oshie, who netted four shootout goals.
With international hockey rules allowing teams to send out the same shooters multiple times, the U.S. chose Oshie to shoot six times in the eight-round affair, in which he beat Russian goalie Sergei Bobrovsky four times, including the game-winner.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 8
The only U.S. medals from Day 9 came in Alpine skiing. Five-time Olympian Bode Miller captured a bronze medal in the men’s super-G and broke down following the race, as he thought back on the year that had passed. The New Hampshire native’s younger brother, Chelone, died at the age of 29 last April from an apparent seizure. Fellow American skier Andrew Weibrecht won a surprise silver, giving the U.S. two athletes on the podium.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 9
Medals weren't as much of a concern on Day 10 as other days. Meryl Davis and Charlie White won gold in ice dancing after taking an early lead the day before. It was the U.S.' first gold in ice dancing.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 10
The weather postponement of the men's snowboard cross from Day 10 to Day 11 produced an early medal for the U.S. as Alex Deibold was a surprise bronze medalist after favorite Nate Holland was eliminated early. Deibold, a former snowboard wax technician, dedicated his medal to the memory of Chelone Miller, the late younger brother of Bode Miller.
Team USA's signature moment of the day came in the debut of the men's ski halfpipe, in which David Wise won the event's first-ever Olympic gold medal.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 11
Ted Ligety met the high expectations on him as favorite in the giant slalom, winning the gold medal to become the first American to claim to Olympic gold medals in Alpine skiing. Bobsleder Lauryn Williams, also made history by winning the silver medal in the women's two-person bobsled, with teammate Elana Myers Williams became just the fifth athlete ever to win a medal in both the Summer and Winter Games after earning gold in the 4x100m relay in London 2012, as well as silver at the 2004 Games in the 100m.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 12
Maddie Bowman, the two-time reigning Winter X Games champion in freestyle skiing women's halfpipe, won the first Olympic gold medal in the event for an American sweep in freeski halfpipe. Team USA's women's hockey team took the silver medal, losing to Canada in the gold-medal game for the second straight Olympics after blowing a late two-goal lead and falling in overtime.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 13
Mikaela Shiffrin stole the show on Day 14, winning the gold medal in the women's slalom to become the youngest winner of an Olympic slalom medal, male or female. Shiffrin overcame a near-catastrophic slip in her second run to recover and hold onto her lead.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 14
The penultimate day of the 2014 Winter Olympics was the only one in which the U.S. did not win a medal. The most realistic shot, after losing to Canada in a semifinal a day earlier, was the U.S. men's hockey team in the bronze-medal game against Finland. But the Americans left Sochi empty-handed, losing to Finland 5-0.
Embedded video_content_type: Best of Team USA: Day 15
Just before the Closing Ceremony commenced, Steven Holcomb and his USA-1 "Night Train Squared" bobsled team fought for the bronze medal in the men's four-man event. Holcomb and the U.S. were the defending gold-medalists, and came back from a fourth-place standing after two runs to earn the bronze medal.
Men's Ski Slopestyle
Men's Ski Slopestyle Final