KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia – American David Wise won the gold medal in the debut of men's halfpipe skiing at the Olympics.
Wise scored 92.00 on his first run Tuesday to take the lead. Mike Riddle of Canada won silver and Kevin Rolland of France took bronze.
Wise, 23, came into the event heavily favored to win gold after doing so in the past three X Games. One of the best skiers in the halfpipe, Wise is first in the Association of Freeskiing Professionals rankings.
The Reno native was the first skier to qualify for the U.S. team, winning two of the first three qualifiers to lock up a spot.
Wise saw his American teammates Lyman Currier and Torin Yater-Wallace fail to advance out of qualifying. Both fell on their first runs.
On his second run, Currier landed his trick but ended in the sitting position with his body twisted. Medical personnel went up the halfpipe, but after a few moments Currier skied down.
The 19-year-old found his father in the crowd and, sobbing, told him, "It popped." After spending several minutes being consoled by his father, David, who was a former ski racer and made the Olympics at 19, Currier limped off in tears.
He had previously torn his anterior cruciate ligament, medial collateral ligament and meniscus. He competed in the World Cup test event here in Feb. 2013, just seven months after surgery to repair the knee.
Yater-Wallace, meanwhile, scored only a 39.00 on his second run after landing backseat at the end and failed to advance.