In a shocking moment on the slopes Wednesday at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Alpine skier Mikaela Shiffrin got a DNF in the second race in a row. The American superstar skidded out of control about five seconds into the opening run of the slalom and is out of the event.
In a wild night in snowboard competition, Lindsey Jacobellis won gold in her fifth Olympics in snowboardcross, while Chloe Kim and Shaun White qualified into halfpipe finals.
Updates on the action in Beijing here:
Americans begin curling gold medal
The U.S. men's curling team, gold-medal winners in 2018, needed an extra end (overtime to the curling layperson), but got a masterful final shot from skipper John Shuster to defeat the Russian Olympic Committee team in their first match.
Shiffrin gets a DNF, again
Mikaela Shiffrin's Olympic woes continued on Wednesday as she recorded her second consecutive "Did Not Finish." Just two days after skiing out in the opening run of the grand slalom, the 26-year-old American had another costly mistake and lasted just five seconds on the course in the first run of the slalom competition.
A clearly stunned Shiffrin sat on the side of the course with her head in her hands for about 20 minutes following the disappointing result.
Shiffrin is hoping to make history in Beijing by winning at least one Olympic gold medal, which would give her the most ever by an American Alpine skier. Another medal of any kind would tie her for the most decorated Olympic woman skier from the United States. She still has three more chances to do just that, starting with Friday's super-G competition. -- D'Arcy Maine
What's next for Shiffrin?
After her second straight disappointing DNF result in the slalom, an emotional Shiffrin left some doubt as to the rest of her race schedule throughout the Olympics.
Shiffrin is expected to participate in the super-G race Friday, and then the downhill and combined competitions on Tuesday and Thursday of next week. But when she was asked if she was still "up to compete" in the remaining events, she wasn't certain.
"Yeah," she said before pausing. "I mean, no. I'll try to reset again, and maybe try to reset better this time. But I also don't know how to do it better because I've never been in this position before and I don't know how to handle it.
"The hill and the ski track looks pretty incredible and I think it will be a pleasure to ski but I also have some teammates who are really fast and we have the athletes who can fill the spaces. If I'm going to ski out on the fifth gate, what's the point?"
Jacobellis wows for gold in snowboardcross
In her fifth Olympics, one of the greatest snowboardcross athletes of all time finally got Olympic gold. Jacobellis, 36, has long been remembered as the athlete who was leading the pack in 2006 before falling on a showboat move and settling for silver. In Beijing, she got redemption -- and the first gold medal for Team USA at these Games.
Chloe Trespeuch of France was second, and Canadian Meryeta Odine won the bronze.
It's a #Gold medal for Lindsey Jacobellis in the Women's #Snowboard Cross!— Olympics (@Olympics) February 9, 2022
She is now the oldest ever snowboarder (male or female) to win an Olympic medal. Congratulations!#Beijing2022 | @TeamUSA | @usskiteam | @LindsJacobellis
Drama in the 1,000-meter speed skating
Medal favorite Kim Boutin of Canada slipped just short of the finish line of her 1,000-meter qualifier in women's speed skating. Boutin held a commanding lead but agonizingly lost her footing with a clear run to the finish.
That led to Team USA's Maame Biney coming through to win that heat and qualify for Friday's quarterfinals. She's joined in the final four by her teammate Kristen Santos, who won her heat, and Corinne Stoddard, one of the quickest outside of the guaranteed spots.
They'll be up against the Netherlands' Suzanne Schulting, who clocked an Olympic record in her heat with a time of 1:27.292. -- Tom Hamilton
Kim leads the field in halfpipe
In the least surprising moment of the Games thus far, American snowboarder Chloe Kim qualified first into Thursday's halfpipe final, where she will compete to become the first woman to win two Olympic gold medals in the event. But don't ask the 21-year-old about defending her gold medal from Pyeongchang. It's a gold medal, she told ESPN in December, not a fortress.
"I don't really get the whole 'defending' thing," Kim said. "I'm just doing another contest and hopefully the conditions are great and I'm able to land the run I want to land."
That strategy has worked well for Kim, who has not lost a halfpipe contest she has entered since Pyeongchang and in Wednesday morning's qualifying, she easily topped the rest of the field with her first-run score of 87.75. "I was really nervous, cause we're at the Olympics," Kim said in a TV interview after her second run. "But the goal of qualifying is just to make it through to finals, so I'm stoked. I don't know how many more Games I'm going to do, so I'm embracing the moment as much as possible."
In perhaps the biggest surprise of the contest, Kim's teammate, Maddie Mastro, one of the only riders who could have challenged her for gold, struggled on both of her runs and finished just outside the top 12. Kim will be the only American rider in the final. -- Alyssa Roenigk
White qualifies to halfpipe finals
In men's halfpipe, three-time gold medalist Shaun White has said in repeated interviews that he plans to defend his 2018 gold medal and won't give it up to his younger competitors without a fight. "I'm going to make them work for it," White has said.
On Wednesday, White had to fight just to make it into the final. After uncharacteristically falling on his signature trick, the double McTwist 1260, White sat in 19th place heading into the second runs. It would be nearly an hour before he had the chance to drop in again. "I had a lot of time to kill, a lot of thoughts running through my mind and a lot of pressure," White said after the event.
Before dropping in for his final qualifying run, White paused at the top of the pipe. Another fall would keep him from making finals for the first time in his Olympic career. But in classic Shaun White style, the Carlsbad, California, native landed a solid run that moved him into fourth place and into Friday morning's final.
"I am so happy I put that last run down," White said. "I'm feeling incredible. You have to fight for it if you want to get into finals. In finals, we're not holding back. For me especially, I'm gonna throw everything I got at it."
When asked if "everything" included a triple cork, White demurred. "I've been eyeing it and I've been feeling this halfpipe. It's a great venue. It's finals, so we'll see. If there's a time to do it, that will be it."
Two-time Olympic silver medalist Ayumu Hirano, 23, of Japan qualified first and will be the final rider to drop in Friday's contest. Scotty James of Australia qualified second ahead of Ruka Hirano of Japan.
U.S. riders Taylor Gold and Chase Josey qualified in sixth and 12th place, respectively. -- Alyssa Roenigk
Stevenson wins silver in ski big air debut
American skier Colby Stevenson took silver in freeskiing big air -- and became the first U.S. athlete to win a medal in the sport's debut. An Olympic rookie, Stevenson's improbable comeback from a near-fatal car accident in 2016 to become a top slopestyle and big air skier has made him one of the most popular athletes on the U.S. freeski team.
Stevenson's teammate, Alex Hall, was a heavy favorite for gold heading into the final. In his third and final run, Hall went for the biggest trick of the contest -- a 2160, the same trick he used to win X Games Aspen three weeks ago -- but crashed on the landing and finished eighth.
Norway's Birk Ruud, who qualified first into finals, took gold and Sweden's Henrik Harlaut took bronze, his first medal in his third Olympic Games. -- Alyssa Roenigk
Bronze in Beijing
Jessie Diggins made history for Team USA as the first woman to earn an individual medal in cross-country skiing. This isn't Diggins' first time writing Olympic history. In 2018, along with teammate Kikkan Randall, she won Team USA's first gold medal in the sport.
Shaun White announced right after the Beijing Olympics began that these will be his fifth and final Winter Games. He is undoubtedly one of America's greatest Olympians and a snowboarding icon. He has three Olympic gold medals and 13 Winter X Games wins.
"I'm a competitor and I want to win," White said of his final Olympics. "I can't show up without that feeling, so it's still there. I am going in eyes open, ready for any outcome. But yeah, I'm hoping to win."
White is not the only five-time Olympian competing tonight. Lindsey Jacobellis will compete in snowboardcross. She has won six world championships, 10 X Games gold medals and an Olympic silver medal.
Winter Olympics watch party
Former Olympic gymnasts Shawn Johnson and Nastia Liukin are tuned in to the Winter Games in style, with each wearing one of their own medals.
Event schedule (all times ET)
8:30 p.m.: Women's snowboard halfpipe qualifying
9:15 p.m.: Women's slalom
10 p.m.: Men's free ski big air final
10 p.m.: Women's snowboard cross qualifying
11:30 p.m.: Men's snowboard halfpipe qualifying
1:30 a.m.: Women's snowboard cross final rounds begin
3:40 a.m.: Men's hockey prelim -- Russian Olympic Committee vs. Switzerland
6 a.m.: Men's and women's short track speed skating
7:05 a.m.: Men's curling round-robin -- USA vs. Russian Olympic Committee