The first US gold medal has been claimed by Hannah Kearney in the women’s freestyle mogls. US teammate Shannon Bahrke held the top spot until the final two skiers, she finished with the bronze.

Bahrke was gripping to the gold medal spot until Canadian Jenn Heil dropped a monster run to take over first place. Bahrke remained in first after a pair of crashes, one to American Heather McPhie and the other to Canadian Kristi Richards, kept two excellent runs away from medal contention.

After Heil took over first position Kearney had what the CTV commentators called, the run of her life. That run was good enough to secure the first gold medal from the United States and hold off Canada’s celebration for a gold on home soil for another day.

The gold/bronze combo also raised the United States’ medal count to four, good enough for a very early lead. Apolo Anton Ohno and J.R. Celski finished second and third, respectively, in the men’s 1500m short track speed skating competition.

It should only be a matter of time before the Canadians claim a gold on their home turf. I can’t imagine what the atmosphere will be in this city once that occurs.