Marit Bjoergen lived up to her billing as the hot favorite by winning the womens 15-kilometer skiathlon at Sochi on Saturday, giving the Norwegian cross-country skier her fourth career Olympic gold medal. Darko Milicic Jersey . Bjoergen pulled away from Swedens Charlotte Kalla on the final straight to win in 38 minutes, 33.6 seconds and defend her title from the 2010 Vancouver Games. Kalla was 1.8 seconds back. Heidi Weng of Norway took bronze. Bjoergen was the most successful athlete of the Vancouver Games with three gold medals, a silver and a bronze and showed right away she has the ability to match that feat in Sochi. With a group of five skiers staying together until the last kilometer, Kalla tried to pull away in the final tough uphill section and decide the race before the final sprint. Only Bjoergen was able to match her pace going up the hill, and the Norwegian then went in front as they entered the stadium. Kalla had no answer for the strong finish by Bjoergen, who had time to turn her head and then raise her arm in celebration as she crossed the line. The skiathlon event starts with 7.5 kilometers of classical-style skiing before switching to freestyle, making it a tough test of the athletes all-round abilities. Kalla won the 10K freestyle event in Vancouver four years ago and showed she has vastly improved her classical style skiing since then. She has never finished on the podium in a skiathlon on the World Cup circuit and celebrated as if she had won on Saturday, raising her arms to celebrate as she crossed the line behind Bjoergen and then jumping up and down holding her skis in the air. She prevented a Norwegian sweep of the medals, with Therese Johaug finishing fourth. Aino-Kaisa Saarinen of Finland was fifth. Justyna Kowalczyk of Poland, a three-time overall World Cup winner who has been struggling with a foot injury, was with the leading group of seven skiers at the halfway mark but slipped and fell just as she was about to enter her station for the ski change and lost several seconds. She exited the ski change 7.4 seconds behind Kalla, and never came any closer during the freestyle. Entering the last lap, she was nearly 19 seconds behind and she finished sixth, 58.1 seconds back. The next womens event is the individual freestyle sprint on Tuesday, when Bjoergen is again among the favorites. The mens 30K skiathlon is Sunday. Orlando Magic Gear . CNN and Gazzetta dello Sport reporter Tancredi Palmeri broke the news via Twitter Tuesday afternoon. Italian Football Association President Giancarlo Abete has also resigned, according to Palmeri. Terrence Ross Jersey .D. Martinezs ninth-inning sacrifice fly scored Torii Hunter with the winning run and the Detroit Tigers beat the Minnesota Twins 4-3 Sunday.ST. LOUIS - The St. Louis Blues have extended head coach Ken Hitchcocks contract through the 2014-15 season. The team also announced Wednesday that associate coach Brad Shaw and assistant coach Ray Bennett will return next season, while assistant coach Gary Agnew and goaltending coach Corey Hirsch will not rejoin the team. Hitchcock, 62, has led the club to three straight post-season appearances, including a franchise-best 52-win campaign this past season. During three years with the Blues, he has compiled a 124-55-20 regular season record and won the Jack Adams Award as the NHLs best coach in 2011-12. Pat Garrity Jersey. The Edmonton native has an all-time coaching record of 657-405-178 (.602) with Dallas, Philadelphia, Columbus and St. Louis. He led the Stars to their only Stanley Cup title in 1999. Hitchcock ranks seventh on the NHLs all-time wins list and is second among active coaches. He was also a member of the coaching staff of Canadas gold-medal teams at the 2002, 2010 and 2014 Winter Olympics. ' ' '
The Winnipeg Goldeyes have assured themselves a winning record on this behemoth 10-game road trip to start the season. Clint Frazier Jersey . A clutch seventh inning pushed the Goldeyes (6-3) past the Lincoln Saltdogs (4-5) 7-4 Saturday night at Haymarket Park in Lincoln before 4,222 spectators. After the two sides exchanged a pair of runs in the second inning, Lincoln grabbed a 4-2 lead with two runs in the bottom of the fourth. The Goldeyes quickly struck back in the top of the fifth inning to tie the game once again, as left fielder Ray Sadler scored on a ground out by third baseman Josh Mazzola and right fielder Donnie Webb belted the next pitch out of the park for his first home run of the season. For the second straight night, Winnipeg found the winning run in the seventh inning. With Sadler on third and centre fielder Reggie Abercrombie on second, Mazzola singled to score both base runners. "Youre just trying to get the ball in play and find a hole out there," Goldeyes pitching coach Jamie Vermilyea said on the Jewel 101 post-game game show of Mazzolas at-bat. "He battled up there and fouled off a couple tough pitches before he got one he could handle. It was a big AB."Mazzola then stole second – his league-leading sixth stolen base of the season – and scored on a single by Webb."Anytime you can take advantage of that and steal that extra base is big," Vermilyea said. "Thats part of our thing this year. Were going to be aggressive on the base paths." After starter Nick Hernandez went five innings for Winnipeg, the Goldeyes bullpen was spectacular in the second half of the game. Southpaw Gabe Aguilar struck out five Saltdogs in 2 2/3 innings of middle relief work. Fellow lefty Brendan Lafferty got the final out of the eighth inning and Chris Kissock pitched the ninth for his second consecutive save in as many nights. The pitching staff combined for a season-high 12 strikeouts. Aguilar picked up the win, while Lincoln reliever Jake Meiers, who was on the hook for the three runs in the seventh inning, suffered the loss. Four Goldeyes had multi-hit nights, while Mazzola had three RBI. The two sides will meet in the series finale Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. Lefty Chris Salamida will look for his first win of the season against Nick Green, who will make his first start of the season for Lincoln. The Goldeyes return home on Monday for their home opener against the Sioux City Explorers. Joe Torre Jersey . Seager had another triple, a home run and a double in a rare feat not seen in more than 40 years, leading Felix Hernandez and the Seattle Mariners past the New York Yankees 10-2. "It was a weird play," Seager said of the triple in the fourth inning. Giancarlo Stanton Jersey . LOUIS -- To stay a step ahead of goaltenders, T.The Rochester Knighthawks agreed to terms on a three-year extension with Cory Vitarelli through the 2016 season. "It feels great (to re-sign with Rochester)," Vitarelli said. "Ive had two great years so far and weve been very successful, so its great to be part of the team again." Since joining the Knighthawks late in the 2011 season, Vitarelli is tied with veteran forward Mike Accursi for second in goals scored with 61, and has finished second only to Cody Jamieson with 54 goals over the past two seasons. "Hes a guy that can get through the middle. He works extremely hhard to get his teammates open, and at the same time, has that ability to put the ball in the net himself," said Knighthawks head coach Mike Hasen. Elston Howard Jersey . Despite his success, Vitarellis name often goes unmentioned, and he has rightfully earned the teams Unsung Hero Award in 2012 and 2013. "I think it benefits me as a guy who goes under the radar and is able to chip in here and there with goals that maybe dont get quite as much recognition," Vitarelli said. "Were a unit up there, and to be successful, we all need to sort of chip in at different times." ' ' '