Canadian duo Max Parrot and Mark McMorris soared to the podium in Pyongyang. (Team Canada photo)

OLYMPIC ROUNDUP: B.C. athletes score their first medals in PyeongChang

It was a day of wins in hockey, snowboarding and freestyle skiing

Ater a slower-than-usual start to this year’s Winter Games, Team Canada is no longer looking at goose eggs, earning its first two medals – a silver and bronze – on the slopes followed by another silver on the men’s speed skating track and another in women’s moguls.

And on the ice, fans were losing their minds over Alberta’s Kaetlyn Osmond and Ontario’s Eric Radford and Meagan Duhamel.

While you were sleeping:

Max Parrot and Mark McMorris gave Team Canada their first medals of the Pyongyang Winter Games with a silver for Parrot and a bronze for McMorris in snowboarding.

“It’s been a rough road for sure, but it definitely feels super, super good to be here and even better to put a run down. To land on the podium is always a really good feeling,” said McMorris.

The women’s ice hockey team got off to a stellar start in Pyongyang early this morning with a 5-0 win over Russian athletes.

Penticton-born freestyle skier Andi Naude took home sixth place in moguls after receiving a DNF from judges in the final women’s moguls race, placing 6th.

It was the B.C. athlete’s first official Olympics after she was the first alternate in the 2014 Sochi Games.

Justine Dufour-Laponte, who took home silver, was full of praise for Naude.

“I know that girl. She works so hard. I would have loved to give her a thousand hugs and a thousand kisses. But she has to give it to herself. It’s a big moment for her and she has to live it. But I just told her that I was proud of her,” she said.

 

Three B.C. athletes competed in the women’s 7.5 km sprint biathlon, each qualifying for Monday’s 10-kilometre race.

Kelowna’s Julia Ransom was the top Canadian, finishing 40th out of 87 competitors. She completed the course in 23 minutes, 15 seconds.

Vernon’s Emma Lunder was 54th in 23:30.4 (two targets missed) and Megan Tandy of Prince George was 57th in 23:42.8 (two targets missed).

Jamie Macdonald, who’s hometown was Fort St. James, also competed in the Short Track women’s 500 m event, but received a penalty and did not qualify or the finals.

But Macdonald did qualify for the finals in the 3,000 metre relay, along with Marianne St-Gelais, Kim Boutin and Kasandra Bradette – all from Quebec. The foursome will be up against China, Italy and Korea on Feb. 20.

Defending Olympic champion Charles Hamelin came up short and not finishing the men’s short track 1500 m event. Meanwhile, Canada’s Samuel Girard finished just off the podium in fourth. “It was a tough race. I got a few good guys in there. I tried to make my way to the front and at some point it went wrong. It happens in short track,” Hamelin told reporters Saturday.

Canadian mixed doubles curlers John Morris and Kaitlyn Lawes have also clinched a spot in the semifinals.

Who, what, when to watch (PST):

4 p.m.: Curling – Mixed Team semifinal

Manitoba’s Kaitlyn Lawes and Morris will face off against the Republic of Korea in the seventh round robin match.

5 p.m.: Snowboard – Women’s slopestyle

Saturday’s events were called off due to incliment weather on the hill for B.C. born-and-raised Spencer O’Brien, 30, alongside Canadians Laurie Blouin and Brooke Voigt – who’s currently calling Whistler home. Instead, the three athletes will get one chance to make the podium in a two-tier final.

6 to 8:30 p.m.: Figure Skating – Mixed Team

Gabrielle Daleman, Patrick Chan and Tessa Virtue with partner Scott Moir will finish the last three events in the mixed team program.

8:30 p.m.: Snowboard – Women’s Halfpipe

Whistler’s Mercedes Nicoll – a three-time Olympian – will hit the hill to qualify in the women’s halfpipe event, in addition to Canadian teammates Elizabeth Hosking and Calynn Irwin of Ontario. Nicoll’s return to the Olympics comes after sustaining a concussion in Sochi 2014, that forced her out of competition for two years.

2:10 a.m. (Monday): Biathlon – Women’s 10 km pursuit

Three B.C. athletes competed in the women’s 7.5 km sprint biathlon, each qualifying for Monday’s 10-kilometre race. Kelowna’s Julia Ransom was the top Canadian, finishing 40th out of 87 competitors, followed by Vernon’s Emma Lunder in 54th and Megan Tandy of Prince George in 57th.

4:30 a.m.: Speed Skating – Women’s 1500 m

Josie Morrison, originally from Kamloops, will be competing alongside fellow Canadian’s Kali Christ and Brianne Tutt.

Olympics highlight of the day:

The men’s bobsleigh teams don’t compete until Feb. 18, but have been keeping busy in one of the most Canadian ways possible:

Canada’s standings so far:

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