Indiana's Nick Goepper earns silver in slopestyle skiing for Team USA
- Author: Rogelio Becker Feb 22, 2018,
Feb 22, 2018, 0:28
The Lawrenceburg native fared better than his teammate Gus Kenworthy, who failed to land any of his three runs and came in last.
Team USA's Nick Goepper, 23, came in second place behind Norway's Oystein Braaten, winning the silver medal in the men's ski slopestyle final competition with an awesome score of 93.60 at the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang on February 18 and now he's basking in the glory of reward after a tough struggle with depression.
The experienced Goepper dropped in late to claim silver, behind Norway's Oystein Braaten who took gold for his first run score of 95.0, while Canadian Alex Beaulieu-Marchand was third on 92.4.
However, before his last move, Goepper was not even in the running to win any medal due to his score, which made the final attempt even more dramatic as he was able to gracefully put together a flurry of stunts before he finished the event in a "clutch" manner.
In danger of completely missing the podium in his second Olympics appearance, Goepper pulled off a masterful performance during his final run to earn a 93.60.
Speaking after the final, Goepper said he changed his initial plan once the high quality of the field became evident. I went out there and put it all on the line and I went for broke. "There were some really good guys still to drop, so it was a nail-biting moment waiting at the bottom".
He just missed out on a second slopestyle medal for Team GB, following Isabel Atkin's surprise bronze in the women's event on Saturday, the first British medal in a Winter Olympic skiing discipline.
The event was ultra-competitive from start to finish - eight of the 12 qualifiers for the final scored more than 90 points.
Woods, who defied injury to finish fifth in Sochi four years ago, qualified for the final in eighth place in attractive conditions at Phoenix Snow Park, but crashed heavily on the last big jump of what could have been a medal-contending first run.
Japan's lone entrant, 16-year-old Taisei Yamamoto, did not reach the final. "Today was the best day of skiing I have ever had in my life".
Braaten set his leading position with 95.00 points in the first run, an intact score throughout the competition.