With just a few days remaining until the end of the Sochi Olympics it’s time once again to catch up with some of Northern California’s best to see how they have performed. A few names from last week once again appear, but so do a whole slew of new faces from various sports such as bobsledding and figure skating.
We already witnessed Julia Mancuso win one medal earlier on in the games and she had a couple more chances for more. Unfortunately her second event did not go so well and neither did her last event, the giant slalom, where she did not finish after missing a gate midway through the course. Still, she finishes with a bronze medal at the Sochi Games.
In figure skating, 15-year-old teenager Polina Edmunds from Archbishop Mitty High School is in the midst of her event, as she is in seventh place with a 61.04, a personal best, after the short program. She ranks behind some of the heavyweights, including American teammates Gracie Gold and Ashley Wagner, but is still in position for a medal as the ladies’ free skating competition kicks off.
Elsewhere in the tournament Steve Holcomb, one of the best bobsled drivers in the world, won bronze in two-man bobsled event for Team USA in what was their first medal in the event since 1952, breaking a 62-year drought. He has another shot at a medal as the driver of the American four-man bobsled as well.
His teammate, Nick Cunningham from Monterey, struggled in the same two-man event, finishing in 13th place, but he too will have a chance in the four-man bobsleds along with another Bay Area native, Andres Drbal.
In the halfpipe David Wise out of the Reno/Tahoe area picked up a gold medal in the first ever men’s ski halfpipe. Wise scored his winning 92.0 during his first of two runs after being one of the top qualifiers as he closed out a very strong showing in his event.
On the hockey side San Jose Sharks centerman Joe Pavelski has one goal and three assists with his goal coming against Russia in that incredible shootout victory. He has been used as heavily as he has been with the Sharks as a penalty killer, a point-man on the power play, as well as the top centerman for Team USA.
Also, in a gesture of goodwill, Pavelski visited the 15-year old Edmunds prior to her first skate to wish her luck. Edmunds was so thrilled she even tweeted about it.
— Polina Edmunds (@PolinaEdmunds) February 19, 2014
For Canada, Patrick Marleau has four assists while Marc-Edouard Vlasic has been the defensive stalwart he was called to be in these Sochi Olympics. They squeaked out a tough 2-1 win over Latvia, who hung in throughout the game mainly due to fantastic goaltending by Kristers Gudlevskis, who stopped 55 Canadian shots.
Both squads are heading to the semifinals though and will face each other for a spot in the gold medal game while the other semifinal will be between Finland and Sweden. The loser of each game goes to the bronze medal match.
Keep an eye out in the last few days of competition for these athletes who have fought long and hard to get to this point. Since there are still plenty of medals to be had in the Sochi Olympics don’t be surprised of NorCal is once again well represented in these last few days.