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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Saturday, February 27, 2010

Ohno captures 8th career medal

 •  U.S. hockey routs Finland

Associated Press

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Apolo Anton Ohno added to his U.S. record with an eighth Winter Olympic medal, a bronze in the 5,000 relay.

MARK BAKER | Associated Press

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Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser
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VANCOUVER, British Columbia China's Wang Meng won her third gold medal at the Olympic short track. Canada's Charles Hamelin got his first, then quickly made it two.

Apolo Anton Ohno picked up a DQ, then pulled out his eighth career medal yesterday in what could be the final Olympic event for the guy with the soul patch.

Quite a closing night for roller derby on blades.

Wang will go down as the biggest short track star of the Vancouver Games, besting teammate Zhou Yang for that honor. Both had two golds apiece going into the final women's event, the 1,000 meters, but Zhou was disqualified for a daring move with three laps to go and she finished last anyway.

Wang has been suffering from a cold in recent days. She had a hacking cough, was sweating heavily and drinking from a water bottle as she spoke to reporters, somewhat breathlessly.

"It was not an easy win," she said. "I feel really tired, exhausted."

Katherine Reutter gave the Americans something to cheer about after Ohno was disqualified in the 500 final, finishing just behind Wang to claim silver. South Korea's Park Seung-hi earned the bronze.

Wang added to her golds in the 500 and 3,000 relay, while Reutter won her second medal of the Vancouver Games. She had been part of the U.S. relay team that won bronze.

"I feel like I've been initiated in this club and not really many people are there," Reutter said, who giddily tossed her flowers into the crowd after the medal ceremony.

One problem, though: How to prevent her Olympic medals from banging together and getting scratched.

"I can't think of a better problem to have," Reutter said, still draped in the U.S. flag as she came through the mixed zone. "I put absolutely everything I had on the line and it paid off."

Hamelin came into the Vancouver Games as Canada's best hope for short track glory, but he had only finished fourth in the 1,000 and seventh in the 1,500. Meanwhile, his girlfriend and teammate Marianne St-Gelais had won two silvers.

Hamelin finally came through on the last night. He slipped by South Korea's Sung Si-bak coming off the final turn, then held on when Sung lost an edge and crashed into the padded boards.

Right behind them, Ohno was trying to get inside Canada's Francois-Louis Tremblay, but wound up knocking him into the boards a move that got the American DQed, denying him a third individual medal at these games after he came across the line second.

Sung slid across the line and wound up with the silver. Tremblay got up to finish and received a bronze for his effort.

"It was just amazing," said Hamelin, who hopped atop the padded boards to hug and kiss St-Gelais, cheering him on from the side of the rink.

Ohno said he didn't deserve to be disqualified, claiming that he put his right hand out merely to protect himself as he surged on Tremblay, looking to make the pass.

"I thought I had eight," Ohno said.

He did before the night was done.

Coming back for the 5,000 relay, he teamed with J.R. Celski, Travis Jayner and Jordan Malone to extend his own record for most decorated short track skater and U.S. Winter Olympian.

Hamelin joined with his little brother Francois, Olivier Jean and Francois-Louis Tremblay to give the Canadians their second gold, sending the crowd at Pacific Coliseum into a frenzy. South Korea took silver.