February 22, 2014 09:09
Athletes from Italy and Germany have tested positive for drugs in the first announced doping cases of the Sochi Olympics.
Italy's Olympic committee said bobsledder William Frullani has been kicked out of the Sochi Games, after testing positive earlier this week for a banned substance (dymethylpentylamine).
German officials say one of their athletes tested positive for drugs in two samples.
A German ski federation official, Stefan Schwarzbach, said that athlete did not test positive for the blood-booster EPO, but for a stimulant sometimes found in nutritional supplements.
That athlete has not been officially identified.
In competition Friday, Ukraine edged out Russia to win gold in the women's team biathlon relay, an emotional victory that comes as Ukraine is struggling with a political crisis that has turned deadly. Norway took bronze.
Also, Marielle Thompson narrowly edged out Canadian compatriot Kelsey Serwa to win the Olympic women's ski cross title.
The two Canadians, who seized control of the race from the start, gave their country a third gold and silver double in the freestyle skiing events. Sweden's Anna Holmlund took bronze.
Canada also won its third straight Olympic gold medal in men's curling, beating Britain, 9-3. Britain was seeking its first medal in the sport since 1924. Canada's women's curling team beat Sweden in Thursday's final.
Sweden beat China, 2-0, Friday to win the men's bronze medal.
In a men's ice hockey semifinal Friday, Sweden beat Finland, 2-1, to qualify for Sunday's gold medal game. Sweden's Erik Karlsson scored the go-ahead goal late in the second period, and Henrik Lundqvist stopped 25 shots.
The game was a rematch of the 2006 Turin Olympics final, when Sweden took the gold.
Later Friday, the United States and Canada renew their rivalry in the other men's hockey semifinal.
The Canadian men have won gold in two of the three past Olympics, including in 2010 in Vancouver over the United States. The two nations squared off Thursday in the women's ice hockey final, with Canada winning 3-2 in overtime.
Meanwhile, Russian coaches responded to criticism that figure skating judges favored Russia's Adelina Sotnikova, who won the gold medal in Thursday's final. At a press conference, the coaches said Sotnikova was a worthy champion, describing how she performed difficult moves in her routine that improved her scoring.
Sotnikova upset Korea's Kim Yu-na, who was seeking to become just the third woman to win back-to-back Olympic titles
The United States leads in the overall medal count with 25, followed by Russia with 24, Canada with 23, and Norway and the Netherlands with 22 apiece. In gold medals, Norway leads with 10, followed by Canada with nine and the United States with eight.
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