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Olympics day 1 recap: Schleper contributes to USA victory

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Saturday was a busy first day in Sochi. Several of the 19 Minnesotans were already competing on the first day of the Olympics.

The big news was the victory for the women's hockey team.

The Americans defeated Finland in women's hockey 3-1 on Saturday. There were Minnesota connections on both teams.

Minnesota native Anne Schleper picked up an assist in the game for Team USA. Schleper assisted Alex Carpenter on a second-period goal to put the Americans up 3-0.

A late goal by Finland's Susanna Tapani was the only goal for the Fins.

U of M Alum Noora Raty was under fire all day in net for the Fins. She stopped 40 of the 43 shots she faced. Team USA outshot Finland 43-15 in the game.

Individually just a couple of Minnesotans were competing Saturday.

Afton native, Jesse Diggins didn't finish with a medal in the women's skiathlon (combines 7.5-kilometer classic cross-country technique, 7.5-kilometer freestyle technique). Diggins finished eighth in 40:05.5.

Diggins finished 1:31.9 behind gold medalist Marit Bjoergen, of Norway. Diggins was the highest finishing American in the competition.

Leif Nordgren, of Marine on St. Croix, finished 45th in the 10-kilometer biathlon sprint final on Saturday. Nordgren finished the course in 26:17.4

Nordgren finished nearly 1:44 behind the gold medal winner, Norway's Ole Einar Bjoerndalen.

On Sunday, Duluth's Anna Ringsred takes to the oval in speed skating. Ringsred competes in the 3000 meter around 5:30 a.m. on Sunday. The Star Tribune reports it is Ringsred's first and only Olympic race of her career.

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