4 to Watch: Canada Defeats U.S. in Women's Hockey Grudge Match - NBC Southern California
The 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang

The 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang

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4 to Watch: Canada Defeats U.S. in Women's Hockey Grudge Match

Downhill ski events, delayed by weather, also are expected to finally get underway on Day 8 of the Pyeongchang Olympics



    Two rivals faced-off in women's hockey. The explosive rivalry between the American and Canadian hockey teams ended in defeat for the U.S.

    Skier Mikaela Shiffrin won her first Olympic gold medal in the giant slalom event as day 8 of competition at the 2018 Winter Games brought some of the heaviest hitters in the Olympics' biggest sports.

    Mikaela Shiffrin
    Photo credit: Mitchell Haaseth/NBC

    1. Shiffrin Makes Debut

    Mikaela Shiffrin's made her long-awaited Pyeongchang debut Wednesday. Her first two would-be debuts were postponed by dangerous winds. Shiffrin was a breakout star at the Sochi Olympics, where the American became the youngest-ever Olympic slalom champion at age 18. Now 22, Shiffrin committed to skiing both the giant slalom and the slalom in Pyeongchang, and she might add the other three individual women's races to her schedule. 

    Lindsey Vonn, another star American skier, did not compete in the giant slalom.

    In the men's downhill event, Aksel Lund Svindal won the men's downhill Thursday, making the 35-year-old Norwegian the oldest Olympic gold medalist in Alpine skiing.

    Alexa Scimeca Knierim and Chris Knierim competing in the pairs portion of the team skating event.
    Photo credit: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

    2. The Knierims Help Team Win Bronze

    After finishing 14th in the short program Tuesday night, married pairs figure skaters Alexa Scimeca Knierim and Chris Knierim competed in the free skate Wednesday night.

    They became the first Americans to land a quad twist in an Olympic competition when they opened their free skate with it. The spectacular, four-revolution element is so difficult that only a couple of other pairs were trying it.

    The rest of their program didn't go nearly as well. Knierim fell on both of their triple jumps, Scimeca-Knierim was shaky landing their throw triple flip and the married couple was out of sync on their combination spin.

    But their Olympics were made when they helped the U.S. win team bronze.

    Southern Calilfornia Olympians: Hockey Player Cayla BarnesSouthern Calilfornia Olympians: Hockey Player Cayla Barnes

    Cayla Barnes, the youngest member of the USA Women's Hockey Team, is from Eastvale in Riverside County.

    (Published Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018)

    3. Team USA Loses to Canada in Women's Hockey

    Bitter rivals Team USA and Canada faced off in a women’s hockey round robin game. Canada beat the U.S. 2-1. It's likely both teams will face off again in the gold medal match.

    Both the U.S. and Canada have guaranteed they're through to the semifinals of the 2018 Games by beating Finland and the Olympic Athletes from Russia, so this match was mainly about pride. It's also very likely a preview of the gold medal game, since both teams will be heavily favored in the semifinals. 

    The U.S. team includes Eastvale's Cayla Barnes, the squad's youngest member. 

    Hagen Kearney
    Photo credit: 2017 NBCUniversal Media, LLC

    4. Men’s Snowboard Cross Final

    France's Pierre Vaultier successfully defended his gold medal in men's snowboard cross, becoming the second athlete to win back-to-back gold medals in the discipline. Australia's Jarryd Huges earned silver and Spain's Regino Hernandez took bronze.

    American snowboarders Nick Baumgartner and Mick Dierdorff finished fourth and fifth, respectively, after crashing on the same jump during the big final. Australia's Alex Pullin also went down on the same part of the course and finished sixth.