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American Olympians Sweep New Slopestyle Skiing Event

American freestyle skiers have dominated the first-ever slopestyle competition at the Olympics, sweeping the top three spots at the winter games in Sochi, Russia.

Joss Christensen won the gold medal Thursday, with Gus Kenworthy taking silver and Nicholas Goepper earning bronze.

Germany will look to continue its dominance on the luge track in the new team relay competition, which involves one women's, one men's and one doubles run in succession. The German lugers competing Thursday have already won gold in all three of the luge events so far in Sochi.

Also Thursday, three of the favorites in men's ice hockey play their first games, with Russia taking on Slovenia, Canada facing Norway and the United States going up against Slovakia.

Russian figure skater Evgeny Plyushchenko will try to continue the host country's success as the men's individual competition begins with the short program. He helped Russia capture gold in the team skating competition. Russian pairs skaters Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov also won gold on Wednesday.



Medals will be awarded Thursday in the women's 500-meter short track and 1000-meter speed skating events, as well as the women's 10-kilometer cross country skiing and men's 20-kilometer biathlon.

Norway and the United States lead in the overall medal count with 12, followed by Canada and the Netherlands with 10. Russia has nine and Germany has eight. Germany has the most gold medals with six.

There are 98 medal events at the Sochi Games, 12 more than in Vancouver in 2010.

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Militant Islamist fighters parade on military vehicles along the streets of northern Raqqa province, Syria, June 30, 2014.

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