20 Things We Learned About Team USA Last Week

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By Darci Miller |
Jan. 08, 2018,
12:08 p.m. (ET)

Mirai Nagasu celebrates in the kiss and cry with coaches Drew Meekins and Tom Zakrajsek after her free skate at the 2018 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships at the SAP Center on Jan. 5, 2018 in San Jose, Calif.


Team USA athletes do a lot in a week. In case you missed any of it, here’s a glimpse at our takeaways from the last seven days.

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1. Perhaps the best female distance speedskater in the country, Carlijn Schoutens will make her Olympic debut in PyeongChang

2. Shani Davis’ legend grows as the speedskater qualified for his fifth Olympic Winter Games

3. No surprises here: Heather Bergsma and Brittany Bowe, two of Team USA’s strongest medal hopes in speedskating, will battle it out for gold in PyeongChang.

4. Erin Jackson, an accomplished inline skater, first put on ice skates four months ago. Now she’s not only an Olympian, she’s the first African-American woman ever to be named to a U.S. Olympic long track speedskating team

5. One of the faces of US Speedskating, Joey Mantia will be back for his second Olympics and competing in the 1,000- and 1,500-meter, plus the mass start

6. It was a long, worrisome road for Mia Manganello at the 2018 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Long Track Speedskating – following an even longer road that took a five-year detour to road cycling – but she finally qualified to make her Olympic debut in PyeongChang

7. Also making its Olympic debut in PyeongChang will be the long track speedskating mass start event, and Team USA will be represented by two women and two men, including the reigning world champion

8. The U.S. cross-country skiing team has been making history in the last few years, and three of the women at the forefront – Jessie Diggins, Sophie Caldwell and Sadie Bjornsen – have qualified for PyeongChang

9. Those three will be joined by Rosie Brennan, Liz Stephen, Erik Bjornsen and four-time Olympian Kikkan Randall

10. The first athlete representing USA Bobsled & Skeleton has qualified to the Olympic team: skeleton racer Matt Antoine, who won bronze in Sochi in 2014, will look to better that finish

11. He’ll be joined by bobsled pilot Codie Bascue, who qualified for his Olympic debut six years after competing at the inaugural Winter Youth Olympic Games in Innsbruck, Austria. His nomination will become official after the full team is named Jan. 15 

12. A dream realized!

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13. Mikaela Shiffrin now has company on the Olympic alpine skiing team! Joining her in PyeongChang in giant slalom is Megan McJames, a two-time Olympian

14. On the men’s side, Ted Ligety and Tommy Ford punched their tickets to the Games in giant slalom as well

15. Meet your U.S. Olympic Women’s Figure Skating Team: Bradie Tennell, Mirai Nagasu and Karen Chen

16. This has been a long time coming for Nagasu.

17. Quad king Nathan Chen will be making his Olympic debut in PyeongChang and will be joined by Adam Rippon and Vincent Zhou

18. Wedding in 2016, Olympics in 2018: Alexa Scimeca-Knierim and Chris Knierim are going to PyeongChang to represent Team USA in pairs figure skating

19. Madison Chock was watching and providing some insightful commentary.

20.  U.S. ice dance is at its zenith, and the 2018 U.S. Olympic team is the most decorated ever: Madison Chock and Evan Bates, Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue, and Maia and Alex Shibutani

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