U.S. Olympic Speed Skating Trials preview, broadcast schedule – Home of the Olympic Channel

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The U.S. Olympic Speed Skating Trials, expected to produce a team filled with medal potential, air live this week on NBC Sports, USA Network, NBCOlympics.com, and Peacock.
Brittany BoweErin Jackson and Joey Mantia, all natives of Ocala, Florida, and ranked No. 1 in the world in their best distance, headline the fields in Milwaukee.
The U.S. can currently send two skaters to the Olympics in the men’s and women’s 500m, 1000m and 1500m, mass starts and men’s 5000m and a men’s team pursuit pool. It’s possible the U.S. may get more spots later this month.
Mia Kilburg holds a commanding lead to grab an Olympic spot in the women’s mass start, having won the first two races in a three-race series that culminates at trials.
The roster is capped at seven men and five women total, so some skaters will have to qualify in multiple events to fill all the spots. That’s very possible with some of the American talent.
Start with Bowe, an 11-time world championships medalist who ranks No. 1 in the world in the 1000m and No. 2 in the 1500m. In 2018, Bowe was part of the U.S. women’s team pursuit that earned bronze, the nation’s first Olympic women’s speed skating medal since 2002.
Then there’s Jackson, the former roller derby skater who in 2018 became the first Black woman to make a U.S. Olympic speed skating team on mere months of training on ice. She entered this season with a best World Cup finish of ninth, then won four of the eight 500m races on the circuit to become an Olympic title contender.
Mantia, a three-time world champion in the mass start, won two of the four World Cup 1500m races this fall. He can become the first U.S. male speed skater to win an Olympic medal since 2010.
All three of them grew up roller skating, training at different times under inline coach Renee Hildebrand in Ocala before converting to the ice and moving to Salt Lake City. Hildebrand, a grandmother in her late 50s, has molded skaters at a roller rink behind a Save A Lot.
Since PyeongChang, the top U.S. skaters for the previous decade, Shani Davis and Heather Bergsma, retired.
U.S. Olympic Speed Skating Trials Broadcast Schedule
*Correction: An earlier version of this post misreported the number of Olympic spots the U.S. has. It is seven men and five women. It also misreported Kilburg’s standing in the mass start. She leads the mass start standings but is not mathematically guaranteed to win the mass start series.
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Dmitriy Balandin, the Kazakh swimmer who pulled off one of the biggest upsets of the 2016 Rio Olympics, retired at age 27.
“Today I would like to announce the end of my sports career,” Balandin said last week, according to Kazakhstan’s Olympic Committee. “I am still inspired. A new phase of my life begins. I have a lot of cool projects in my head that will soon be implemented.”
Balandin reportedly has coaching aspirations.
In 2016, he won the Olympic men’s 200m breaststroke out of lane eight as the last qualifier into the final. He edged American Josh Prenot by seven hundredths of a second and became Kazakhstan’s first Olympic swimming medalist.
He followed that up with 11th- and 17th-place finishes in the breaststrokes in Tokyo last year.
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SYDNEY — A’ja Wilson and the U.S. put on quite a show, breaking the World Cup scoring mark in a record rout of South Korea.
Brionna Jones scored 24 points and Wilson added 20 to help the U.S. beat South Korea 145-69 on Monday. Shakira Austin’s layup with 9 seconds left helped the Americans break Brazil’s record of 143 points set in 1990.
“I don’t think I’ve ever been part of a team that can score the basketball like this,” Wilson said. “This is crazy, we put up 145 points. I think when you look at us and just knowing how talented we are, we just came together and we play together very, very well.”
The U.S. always has the most talented and deepest roster of any team in the World Cup with 12 WNBA stars on the roster. Still, the Americans had never come close to that sort of offensive output during it’s storied World Cup history. The previous team record was 119 points against Angola in 2014 and China in 2006. The scoring margin was also the biggest in U.S. history as well surpassing the 75-point win over Angola in 2014.
The win was also the 26th in a row in World Cup play for the Americans, who haven’t lost since the 2006 semifinals when they fell to Russia. The U.S. also won 26 in a row from 1994-2006. The Soviet Union holds the World Cup record with 56 straight wins from 1959-1986.
MORE: FIBA World Cup Results
What started with Sue Bird, Diana Taurasi and Sylvia Fowles has now been passed on to Breanna Stewart and Wilson. A legacy of excellence that doesn’t look like it’s ending anytime soon.
The U.S. (4-0), which has been playing stellar defense, was challenged by South Korea early. The teams were trading baskets for the first 8 minutes and it was tied at 21 before the Americans took control, scoring the final 11 points of the period.
Kahleah Copper came off the bench for the first time of the tournament and scored six points during that spurt. The Americans kept the streak going to start the second quarter, scoring nine of the first 11 points to put the game away.
By the time the game reached the half the U.S. was up 68-40, including scoring 44 points in the paint against the undersized Koreans.
“We were trying to get the ball inside,” Jones said. “We had an advantage there.”
The only suspense in the second half was how many records the Americans could break. They took down their own scoring mark on Sabrina Ionescu’s 3-pointer with 6:15 left in the game and kept putting up points with Austin’s layup capping off the contest.
Other records broken on Monday included the 62 field goals made, 36 assists and 94 points in the paint.
“Our size was a problem for them and I thought we shared the ball,” U.S. coach Cheryl Reeve said.
The Americans were well rested for the game after having their first day off of the tournament on Sunday.
Despite the rout, South Korea (1-3) can still advance to the quarterfinals with a win over Puerto Rico on Tuesday.
Leeseul Kang, who had 37 points in a win over Bosnia and Herzegovina, scored 10 points. Hyejin Park had 17 to lead the team.
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