This month at the Winter Olympics in Korea, there are eight Reno-Tahoe athletes who are going for the gold.
Jamie Anderson from South Lake Tahoe has scored gold in the snowboarding slopestyle. We have the latest updates on all of our local athletes and how they are doing in the competition.
Bryce Bennett is a Tahoe native and a part of the men's alpine skiing squad. He was born in Squaw Valley and calls Tahoe City his current home. In the alpine combine, Bennett was 17th of the 37 skiiers and had a combined time of 2:09.97. For the competition each skier takes on run in the downhill and one in the slalom – the fastest combined time wins. Bennett was in 23rd after his downhill run and his slalom time bumped him up a whole six slots where he really shone. Marcel Hirscher from Austria took the gold in the competition with an overall time of 2:06.52.
"For me, the only way I could have been competitive today was if I had a fast downhill run," Bennett reported. "I don't ski slalom. Ever. Maybe two times a year – barely. For me, I needed to be competitive in downhill. I needed to be in the top 5 and then have a solid slalom run where you don't lose three seconds to Hirscher. But I wasn't able to do that."
Bennett is set to compete in downhill, his best event, on February 14.
Another Tahoe native, Jamie Anderson has already defended her slopestyle gold medal this Winter Olympics. Despite poor riding conditions, Anderson scored an 83 on her first run and that score was strong enough to hold up as the competition was reduced from three runs per competitor to just two due to inclement weather. Only 5 of 25 riders were able to complete their first run and only 8 put down clean runs the second round. Anderson is a 14-time X Games medalist, including five golds, and had no problem competing in the high winds to claim her second Olympic gold. Laurie Blouin from Canada came in second with a 76.33 point run.
Anderson will also compete in big air on February 19 and 23.
David Wise is our Reno native who specializes in freestyle skiing in the ski halfpipe. He won golf in Sochi at his Olympic debut in absolutely horrible weather and is looking to do so again this year. He's fought off and healed from injuries the past two seasons, but he is at the top of his game as he enters Korea. Wise won three of five Olympic qualifying events this winter, including the X Games. He's the first person to ever land four doubles in different directions during a run.
See Wise compete in his category on February 20 and 21.
Another South Lake Tahoe native, Maddie Bowman has been giving David Wise a run for his money in the ski halfpipe. She also won the inaugural Olympic ski halfpipe in Sochi, making it a local sweep. She's medaled in the last seven X Games, taking home five golfs, a silver and a bronze. Some of her competition has risen up to match her this year but having won golf in last month's X Games in Aspen Bowman is in good form.
See her compete on February 18 and 19.
Originally from Carmel, Brita Sigourney claims her Tahoe roots from her parents' condo where they spent every weekend, so she could train at Alpine Meadows. In 2014, she reached the Olympics and finished sixth. She's hungry for a podium position this time around and was second in this year's X Games after Maddie Bowman.
She'll compete with Maddie Bowman on February 18 and 19.
Stacey Cook was born in Truckee and calls Reno her home. She's back for her fourth and last Olympics. Her specialty is the speed events, especially downhill skiing. Her top Olympic finish was 11th in that event in 2010.
Tom Jitloff now lives in Germany, but he was raised in Reno and learned to ski atop Tahoe's mountains. Also a UNR alum, Jitloff is a giant slalom specialist. He has reached five world championships and help seven U.S. titles.
Mark Engel lives in Truckee and was a member of the U.S. national team from 2011 – 2013. He took the college route after a back injury and won the 2014 NCAA giant slalom title for Utah. This is the first Olympic team he's made.
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