Team Canada begins defence of men's hockey gold on Canadian Trail
Jennifer Jones remains unbeaten in women’s curling
Day 6 of the Sochi Olympics brought good and bad news for Canada.
Let’s begin with the positives.
The Canadian men’s hockey team got past a very slow start and began their defence of Olympic gold with a 3-1 victory over Norway.
Canada was held scoreless after the first period and fans were already starting feel a little concerned about the empty scoreboard – only one period and some alarms started to go off. That’s the type of pressure the defending champions and gold medal favourites will carry on their shoulders throughout the whole tournament.
Though, it didn’t last long.
The group started to feel more comfortable on ice and dominated the game from the start of the second period and until the end of the game.
Drew Doughty of London, Ont., Victoria's Jamie Benn and Shea Weber of Salmon Arm, B.C. scored for Team Canada. But head coach Mike Babcock wasn’t too happy about his team’s performance and worried about the missed opportunities early in the game.
It was a good start despite minor hiccups as they prepare to face Austria on Friday (12 p.m. ET).
Meanwhile, Toronto's Patrick Chan delighted the spectators at Iceberg Skating Palace with a solid performance in the men’s figure skating short program that placed him second ahead of the free program Friday (10 a.m. ET), where he holds the world record.
Earlier on Thursday, Jennifer Jones remained unbeaten in women’s curling after her Winnipeg rink defeated former world champion Mirjam Ott of Switzerland. The Canadian women have Friday off before putting their perfect 5-0 record on the line against Japan at midnight ET on Saturday.
But Thursday also delivered a couple of disappointing blows.
Alex Gough came up short in her bid for a medal, again. This time the Calgary native, along with teammates Sam Edney, Justin Snith and Tristan Walker missed out on bronze by just 0.1 seconds in luge team relay.
The bad news continued when François Hamelin of Levis, Que., crashed into the boards during the men’s short track 5,000-metre relay semifinals, leading to Canada’s elimination from an event they won four years ago in Vancouver.
Speed skater Christine Nesbitt, the defending Olympic champion in the women’s 1,000-metre event also failed to defend the gold medal she won in Vancouver with a mediocre 9th place. The London, Ont., native had the best time among Canadians.
Elsewhere along the Trail:
- The rink of Brad Jacobs from Sault Ste. Marie earned their second consecutive win in men’s curling after edging Denmark 7-6. Canada holds a positive record of 3-2 heading into a tough matchup against Norway on Friday.
- Kevin Reynolds of Coquitlam, B.C., fell twice during his performance in the men’s figure skating short program and finished in the 17th place. Teammate Liam Firus was 28th.
- Sarah Reid of Calgary and and Mellissa Hollingsworth of Airdrie, Alta. couldn’t crack the top five following the first two runs in women’s skeleton.
- Marianne St-Gelais of Saint-Félicien, Que. was eliminated in the semifinals of the women’s 500-metre short track, while Jessica Hewitt of Kamloops, B.C. and Valerie Maltais of Saguenay, Que. were ousted in quarters.
- Calgary's Kaylin Irvine finished 18th in the speed skating 1,000-metre race. Kali Christ of Regina was 21st.