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Medals won in first Olympic ski halfpipe

Published On: Feb 18 2014 01:29:52 PM EST
Updated On: Feb 18 2014 06:09:01 PM EST
David Wise, ski halfpipe, Sochi Olympics

Dylan Martinez/Reuters

David Wise captured the first Olympic gold medal in freestyle skiing halfpipe Tuesday in Sochi.

Wise scored 92.0 out of 100 on the first of his two runs in the final and then fell at the start of his second run after clipping the edge of the pipe. Still his first score stood up enough to give him first place in the event.

Coming in second was Canadian Mike Riddle, with Kevin Rolland of France winning bronze.

The 12 skiers who advanced to the finals each got two runs, with their best score counting toward the medals.

Snow was falling steadily on the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park above Sochi as the skiers went through the final round.

While the event is new to the Olympics, it has been included at the International Ski Federation's Freestyle World Ski Championships since 2005. It has also been contended at the Winter X Games since 2002 as superpipe, which is a large halfpipe used in extreme sports.

Wise, a 23-year-old Reno, Nev., native, has won the superpipe event at the Winter X Games the last three years and is the reigning world champion in halfpipe.

He topped final World Cup standings for the 2011-12 season, but fell to third place last year and finished the 2013-14 season in ninth place, although he won the last of four halfpipe events that made up the season.

Canadian Justin Dorey, who came into the event No. 1 in the 2013-14 World Cup halfpipe standings, fell on both of his runs and finished in 12th place.

Aaron Blunck, the other American in the final and, at 17, the youngest finalist, finished seventh overall. The Crested Butte, Colo., native came into the Olympics right behind Dorey in the World Cup standings.

The other two Americans in the event, Torin Yater-Wallace, 18, of Aspen, Colo., and Lyman Currier, 19, of Boulder, Colo., didn't qualify for the final, finishing in 26th and 28th place overall, respectively.

Currier is following in the footsteps of his father, David Currier, who skied in the 1972 Olympics at age 19.