Joe Bittner, ‘Doah Staff Writer
February 26, 2014
The 2014 Winter Olympics have come to a close in Sochi. Nations battling it out in several different sporting events will return home feeling either accomplished or disappointing.
The nation with the most medals will not have to travel far, as Russia emerged as the medal tally champion.
The medal count race was close throughout the Olympics and ended the same way. Russia took home a total of 33 medals- 13 gold, 11 silver and nine bronze.
They spent most of the race in second or third place, but caught fire at the end by earning four medals on the final day of competition. There was no particular event that stood out for Russia, as they earned around four or five medals in many events. Having this average showed their consistency- a pace that helped them come out on top.
The United States finished second in the medal count with 28- nine gold, seven silver and 12 bronze. While the total number is decent, the lack of gold and silver medals is disappointing.
The U.S. had the most bronze medals of any country, meaning we were unable to be the best in that event. Twenty-eight medals are great, but not when almost half come from finishing in third place.
On a positive note, we were able to sweep the podium in men’s freestyle ski slopestyle. This was crucial to increasing our medal count because no one else was able to earn medals in that event.
Norway took home third place with 26 medals- 11 gold, five silver and 10 bronze. These are average numbers for a country that trains specifically for the Winter Olympics.
They had the second most gold medals, trailing only Russia, which is a good sign. They also were second in bronze medals, showing they were barely able to make the podium on occasions.
However, Norway was able to earn 11 medals in the cross-country event including five gold. This is incredible and gave them a severe surge towards the top of the medal count list.
Canada was close behind Norway for a top three finish, but fell one medal short with a total of 25 medals: ten gold, ten silver and five bronze.
An important event for Canada was hockey, both men’s and women’s. They were both able to pull off important victories against the U.S. that helped bring them into the top four in the medal race.
Another event that stood out for them was freestyle skiing. They earned nine total medals, two more than the U.S. earned. They also won gold in both men’s and women’s curling, sweeping that event. Canada competed hard and did well with a combined 20 gold and silver medals.
Wrapping up the top five countries is the Netherlands with 24 medals. The most incredible part of this is that they only competed in two events: speed skating and short track speed skating. They earned and unheard of 23 medals in speed skating: eight gold, seven silver and eight bronze. Talk about dominating an event, it seemed like the Dutch were the only ones to even compete in it with all of their victories. This is an incredible achievement that they should be proud of.
The Olympics displayed some of the world’s greatest athletes and some of the most dangerous sports on the planet. While there were many obstacles that stood in the way of the athletes, such as living conditions, they lived their dream. We thank every athlete that competed for reminding us that no matter what your dream may be, you should never give up on it.