Sochi 2014 Olympic Update (Day 14)

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Countries continue to race to the end of these Olympics but the committees of many countries have a big decision to make before it is all over. Countries must decide one of the biggest honours in the Olympics as the closing ceremony flag bearer is still to be decided. Every Olympics each country decides which athlete will carry the flag in to the arena during the opening and closing ceremonies. Generally the opening ceremony flag bearer is an athlete that has put some time into their countries efforts. These are athletes that have been in the Olympics before and have done well for their country. There are also athletes who are simply the most recognizable athlete on their Olympic team. It is a great honour to carry the flag into the arena as it means that the athlete is the focus and is deserving of leading their team into the ceremony and of leading their team into the Olympics. For the closing ceremony the factors in deciding a flag bearer is much different as it is a much more immediate response. Instead of picking someone who has done something for the team over many years the decision is more about picking someone who has made an impact in the games. There are a number of countries that don’t have a lot of options as they have a small amount of athletes and the decision is very simple. For a number of countries though the decision is a lot tougher as they look to their team of over 100 athletes to decide who deserves the honour to carry the flag in the closing ceremonies. It is a decision that these countries take seriously and that the athletes chosen remember for the rest of their lives. There are many ways to decide who should take the flag in the closing ceremonies as many countries revert to the best athletic performance. They look to the athletes that won the most medals or won a medal that had never previously been won by that country. This year though there is one country that should go a different way to decide their flag bearer. Canada has not had the performance they were wishing for in the Olympics but they remain one of the top countries and have a number of athletes to choose from. In terms of extraordinary performances there is Jennifer Jones who became the first female curler to go undefeated and win the Gold in the Olympics or Kaillie Humphries and Heather Moyse who would become the first female bobsledders to repeat as Gold Medalists, or even Denny Morrison who was one of few Canadian athletes to win multiple medals. All of these athletes could be named the flag bearer for Canada and they are all deserving of the honour but there are two more members of the Canadian team that may deserve the honour more than anyone else and neither won a medal this year. The Canadians pride themselves on much more than athletic performance as the country prefers to focus on the good that sports brings out. That would be expressed perfectly by Gilmore Junio and Justin Wadsworth in two of the most selfless acts in these Olympics. A coach rarely gets the opportunity to carry the flag for big countries like Canada but if anyone deserves it Justin Wadsworth would be the one. This is the Cross-Country coach that would lend a ski to a Russian athlete, who had broken his, to ensure that the Russian could finish the race with dignity in front of his home crowd. It was a great act that was seen around the world and would express the spirit of the Olympics above the competition. The more likely choice is an athlete that made the ultimate sacrifice to give his teammate and his country a chance to win a medal. Gilmore Junio would give up his spot in the Men’s 1,000m Speed Skating race to Denny Morrison who had fallen in the Olympic qualifying race and would not secure a spot on the Olympic team for the race. Junio would give up his spot because he thought that Morrison was the better shot of winning a medal for Canada and Morrison would make good on the offer winning a Silver Medal in the event. Gilmore Junio’s sacrifice should be rewarded as he gave up his time in the Olympics for a teammate and that deserves an honour like carrying the flag for Canada in the closing ceremonies. Every country must make this decision as many of them have great stories throughout the Olympics and great athletic performances. Only one person can carry the flag though and the decision is coming up to bestow one of the biggest honours for an Olympic athlete to carry the flag into the closing ceremonies.


Canadian Story:

Canada 2 USA 0
A day after the Canadian Women’s Hockey team beat the USA for the gold medal the men would face off in the semifinals and the Canadians would take a 1-0 lead in the 2nd period and would keep the tight defence to move into the Gold Medal Game on Sunday

Starting the Day Strong
The day would start off well for Canada as Marielle Thompson would take the gold medal while Kelsey Serwa would take the silver medal in the women’s ski cross to give the Canadians two more medals to start the day

Claiming a Sport
The Canadians have two national sports at the Winter Olympics and on Day 14 they would complete the sweep of one of these sports as Brad Jacobs and his rink would win the gold medal in curling in a very dominant performance

The best Day yet
The Canadian team seemed to be falling short of their goal of 26 medals but Day 14 would bring them back on track especially after they would earn their third short track medal when Charle Cournoyer won bronze in the Men’s 500m race


Day 14 Medal Results:

Alpine Skiing
Women’s Slalom
1. Mikaela Shiffrin (USA)
2. Marlies Schild (Austria)
3. Kathrin Zettel (Austria)

Women’s 4x6km Relay
1. Ukraine
2. Russia
3. Norway

Men’s Curling
1. Canada
2. Great Britain
3. Sweden

Freestyle Skiing
Women’s Ski Cross Finals
1. Marielle Thompson (Canada)
2. Kelsey Serwa (Canada)
3. Anna Holmlund (Sweden)

Short Track
Men’s 500m
1. Victor An (Russia)
2. Dajing Wu (China)
3. Charle Cournoyer (Canada)

Women’s 1,000m
1. Seung-Hi Park (Korea)
2. Kexin Fan (China)
3. Suk Hee Shim (Korea)

Men’s 5,000m Relay
1. Russia
2. USA
3. China


Day 15 Medal Events:

Alpine Skiing
Men’s Slalom

Men’s 4×7.5km Relay

Women’s 30km Mass Start

Men’s Bronze Medal Game

Women’s Parallel Slalom
Men’s Parallel Slalom

Speed Skating
Men’s Team Pursuit
Women’s Team Pursuit


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