TURIN, Italy (AP) - The United States has its first, and Chad Hedrick has the first of the five he's after. Hedrick has won the men's five-thousand speedskating race at the Winter Olympics. His time of six minutes, 14-point-68 seconds was two-hundredths of a second off the Olympic record. He's got in mind matching Eric Heiden's (HY'-denz) record of five golds in a single Olympics. Sven (swen) Kramer of the Netherlands took silver in six-16-point-40. Italy's Enrico Fabris (en-REE'-koh fah-BREES') got the host country's first medal by snatching the bronze while skating in the final pair. Winning on this date, February eleventh, is significant for Hedrick. His grandmother died on this day 13 years ago from brain cancer. Geraldine Hedrick was her grandson's best friend while he was growing up in Spring, Texas, as the son of a roller rink owner. He had said today's race would be for her.
FREESTYLE SKIING - U-S blanks in women's moguls SAUZE d'OULX, Italy (AP) - The U-S got snowed under in women's moguls. Canadian Jennifer Heil won the gold medal on the last run of the day. She beat defending champion Kari Traa of Norway by 85-hundredths of a point. The bronze went to France. America's best finisher was Shannon Bahrke (BAR'-kee) in tenth place. The best U-S moguls skier, Hannah Kearney (KAHR'-nee), bungled her qualifying run and didn't make it to the finals. Michelle Roark (rohrk) of the U-S finished 18th.
FIGURE SKATING - Five-time world champion. Nine-time U-S champion. Never an Olympic champion. And Michelle Kwan might not take a shot at the gold this year in Turin. America's frequent figure skating champion says she has to listen to her feelings, even if she doesn't want to drop out of the Olympic competition. Kwan had stiffness in the groin area near the site of a recent injury when she practiced today. If she drops out, the spot would go to Emily Hughes, the younger sister of 2002 Olympic champion Sarah Hughes. During her first public Olympic practice session, Kwan had problems with some jumps and didn't run through her short program. She cut short the workout after 40 minutes with about 15 minutes of time remaining.
FIGURE SKATING - U-S pairs champions Rena Inoue (REH'-nah IN'-oo-way) and John Baldwin have done something that's never before been done in Olympic competition. During today's short program, they landed the first throw triple-axel in Olympic history. Inoue completed the difficult three and a-half revolution maneuver with ease. It's the second time in a month they've successfully completed the move. It helped them earn a 61-point-27 total score -- their personal best. The competition is still under way in Turin.
HOCKEY- Captain Krissy Wendell (wen-DEHL') scored twice in the third period to help the U-S rout Switzerland 6-to-0 in a women's hockey opener at the Winter Olympics. Tricia Dunn-Luoma scored an unassisted 5-on-3 short-handed goal. The U-S broke open the game with four goals in the third period, finally breaking through against goalie Patricia Elsmore-Sautter, who turned in 50 saves. Chanda Gunn had to make only nine saves for the U-S at the other end. Katie King, Sarah Parsons, and Jenny Potter also scored goals. The Americans play Germany tomorrow. Finland beat Germany today 3-to-0, and Sweden beat Russia 3-to-1.
NORDIC COMBINED-Lodwick eighth in Nordic combined PRAGELATO, Italy (AP) - American Todd Lodwick had a disappointing day at the Olympics. He finished eighth in the Nordic combined in his fourth and final Olympics, and he said a congested head made him feel like he was "wearing a football field" on his head. Germany, Austria and Norway took the medals. The favorite, Finland's Hannu Manninen, who's been the top Nordic combined competitor in recent years, finished ninth and still doesn't have a medal in four Olympics. American Bill Demong, who thought his career was over after he fractured his skull in a swimming pool accident three and a-half years ago, placed 15th.
LUGE American Tony Benshoof (BEN'-shahf) is in third place after two runs in the men's singles luge. The final two runs are tomorrow. He's got Italy's Armin Zoeggeler (ZOOG'-lur) and Russian Albert Demtschenko (dem-CHEN'-koh) ahead of him. Zoeggeler is the defending champion and posted track records in both of his runs today. Olympic rookie Jonathan Myles is 19th. Thirty-nine-year-old German Georg Hackl (GAY'-org HAK'-ihl), in his fifth Olympics, is fifth. BIATHLON Haakinen tenth in biathlon CESANA, Italy (AP) - The first gold medal of the Winter Olympics in Turin went to Germany. Michael Greis (grys) won the men's 20-kilometer biathlon. Jay Haakinen (HAH'-kih-nen) was tenth and fellow American Lowell Bailey finished 27th. Norway's Ole Einar Bjoerndalen (OH'-leh EYE'-nar byorn-DAH'-len), who was hoping to sweep all five events in Turin, settled for second. Bjoerndalen had swept four biathlon gold medals in Salt Lake City. Another Norwegian was third. SKI JUMPING Ski jumpers begin qualifying PREGALATO, Italy (AP) - Americans Clint Jones and Alan Alborn qualified for tomorrow's next round in the 90-meter ski jumping.
(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)