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U.S. Wins Olympic Hockey Duel Against Russia

The U.S. hockey team battled to a 3-2 shootout win over Russia at the Sochi Olympics on Saturday, practically assuring the Americans of a spot in the quarterfinals.

With President Vladimir Putin watching on, Russian team captain Pavel Datysuk twice tied up the game but missed two shots in an eight-round shootout, which the U.S. won through T.J. Oshie.

For Russia, concerns are now mounting after defeat followed an uninspiring 5-2 win over outsider Slovenia on Thursday, and the host nation may now have to endure an extra playoff round ahead of the hockey quarterfinals.

The U.S. sits top of Group A after adding the victory over the hosts to Thursday’s 7-1 pounding of Slovakia, and will progress directly to the quarterfinals as group winner, barring a surprise defeat to Slovenia on Sunday.

Russia plays Slovakia on Sunday.

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