PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — The Russians won the men’s hockey gold medal Sunday – without a flag or national anthem.

So they sang the anthem instead to celebrate their 4-3 victory over underdog Germany while playing as “Olympic Athletes from Russia.”

“You play for your country, it is more important,” Russian captain Pavel Datsyuk said. “It feels good but I have accomplished my dream. Now I have no dream.”

The Russians were favored to win the men’s tournament but needed Kirill Kaprizov’s overtime goal to give them their first hockey gold since 1992.

The team was barred from using Russian flags or having its national anthem played because of IOC sanctions for state-sponsored doping. While the Olympic flag rose to the rafters, the players sang Russia’s anthem over the generic Olympic anthem.

The score was 1-1 entering the third period, but Nikita Gusev of Russia scored on a shot that bounced in off the helmet of Germany goaltender Danny aus den Birken. Just 10 seconds later, Dominik Kahun tied it.


After Germany took a 3-2 lead with 3:16 left, Russia had to kill a penalty – and tied it again at 3-3 on Gusev’s second goal.

“It was the craziest game ever,” Ilya Kovalchuk said. “We scored (to make it) 2-1 and we thought, everything is OK now. But then they scored quickly and we got a penalty.

“When we had the penalty with two minutes to go, I honestly thought we won’t be Olympic champions.”

CROSS-COUNTRY SKIING: Marit Bjoergen of Norway closed her career – and the Games – by adding another gold to her record-breaking collection.

Bjoergen, 37, finished the women’s 30-kilometer mass start in 1 hour, 22 minutes, 17.6 seconds – more than 1:49 ahead of silver medalist Krista Parmakoski of Finland for her 15th overall medal. That’s the most by any athlete in Winter Olympic history.

“When I look behind me and see what I have done, it’s incredible,” said Bjoergen, who has won eight gold medals. “It has been an amazing career for me. This is my last Olympics and to finish like this is incredible.”


Bjoergen’s latest medal also gave Norway 14 overall in cross-country skiing, breaking the record of 13 held by the Soviet Union in 1988. The Norwegians finished with 39 overall medals, also a Winter Games record.

Bjoergen already had surpassed Norwegian biathlete Ole Einar Bjourndalen for the most Winter Games medals ever. She has eight career golds, four silvers and three bronze medals.

“Of course I’m very proud of myself to do what I’ve done,” Bjoergen said. “It’s been an incredible career for me.”

Stina Nilsson of Sweden won bronze. Teresa Stadlober of Austria had been in second place but took a wrong turn and finished ninth.

WOMEN’S CURLING: The Swedish women took control of the match by stealing a point in back-to-back ends – the fourth and the fifth – to beat South Korea, 8-3.

Sweden’s women continued their dominance in the sport with five medals – three gold – in the six Olympics since curling joined the Winter Games.


The silver was the first curling medal for South Korea.

“We have been through a lot,” skip Kim Eun-jung said, “so that we could blaze a trail.”

BOBSLEDDING: Francesco Friedrich, and his German team of Candy Bauer, Martin Grothkopp and Thorsten Margis finished their four runs in 3 minutes, 15.85 seconds to win the four-man gold by more than a half-second.

South Korean and German sleds shared second after they both finished in 3:16.38.

Friedrich became the fifth German pilot to sweep the two-man and four-man golds in the same Olympics.

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