Published: Thu, February 22, 2018
Sports | By Brett Lawson

Alaska Pacific University skier wins gold in cross-country team sprint

Alaska Pacific University skier wins gold in cross-country team sprint

It was a fitting race for two gritty and strong racers whose lives and careers have always been lived in parallel - from making their debuts in Salt Lake City, to having children within months of each other around two years ago.

Marit Bjoergen made Olympic history and the United States women's cross-country team won its first medal ever - and it was gold.

"Hearing it out loud, it still doesn't feel real", Randall told NBC after the conclusion of the race.

Diggins, who had come agonizingly close to medaling in the 10-kilometer freestyle last week, refused to be denied this time. The skiers beat the Swedish team (Charlotte Kalla and Stina Nilsson) by 0.19 seconds over the 4.66-miles race, finishing at a brisk 16:22.56.

Jessica Diggins of the United States celebrates after winning the gold medal in the during women's team sprint freestyle cross-country skiing final at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang South Korea Wednesday Feb. 21 2018. (AP
After a 42-year medal drought, the US finally claims gold in this Olympic event

"In the final stretch, I was just thinking, 'Go, go, go, '" Diggins said. With plans firmly in place to retire and make a new home with her family after the 2018 Games, it seemed possible that Randall, 35, might see her career end without an Olympic medal. Norway got the bronze medal. The American women finished with a winning time of 15 minutes, 56.47 seconds - just 0.19 seconds ahead of silver medalist Sweden. Diggins and Randall are enormously accomplished cross-country racers. "Kikkan Randall inspired a whole movement or youth skiers, and for her to win this medal alongside the future of the team and Jessie Diggins was incredible".

They had previously teamed up in 2013, when they won the world championship in the team sprint event.

The Americans posted the fastest time in the semifinals to start on the front row in the finals Wednesday.

SCOTUS Rejects Challenge by California Gun Owners
Thomas noted that California's waiting period is the second longest in the country, and that it exists for two reasons. Americans have a right to have gun at home for self-defense, the court said in 5-4 decisions.

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