Nick McAdam, Staff Writer
The Winter Olympics in PyeongChang will mark the 23rd cycle of the global tournament. Several sports, including curling, snowboarding, alpine skiing and ice hockey will be played until Feb. 25.
To get in the mood for the Winter Games, students around Utica College shared their opinions on their favorite and least favorite Olympic sports.
Sophomore Kassidy Krenzer prefers the frozen competition as opposed to the Summer Games.
“I think hockey was the most entertaining in the past Olympics,” Krenzer said. “Winter sports are always more entertaining to me. It’s pretty sad that the NHL won’t be sending their players to this year’s Olympics.”
Commissioner Gary Bettman officially broke the news last year that the NHL would not send its player to compete in this year’s Games. Bettman explained that he did not want to disrupt the flow of the season with the NHL All-Star Game occurring just a month prior.
Regardless, Krenzer still pinpointed her favorite hockey moment that happened not too long ago.
“The T.J. Oshie shootout was incredible a few years back,” Krezner said. “He pretty much beat Russia all by himself.”
Oshie scored repeatedly in a game-winning shootout goal against Russian goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky in the Sochi 2014 games.
On the other hand, the Summer Games provide their array of competitions including soccer, swimming and track. The warm festivities grasp the attention of UC junior Hawa Sanogo who shared her favorite sports.
“I liked it when Neymar got some revenge on Germany when winning the gold medal in Brazil,” Sanogo said. “Usain Bolt always manages to steal the show as well.”
Brazil got thumped 7-1 in the 2014 World Cup by the eventual champions in Germany. Brazilian superstar Neymar got a bit of payback, though, when scoring the game-winning goal in a shootout to earn a gold medal right in his home country during the Olympics.
Utica College sophomore Michael Vargas shared the same passion for the Summer Games as Sanogo. Yet, Vargas prefers a different sport that features on-the-court action.
“The United States basketball team is something I always like to watch,” he said. “They dominate in pretty much every single Olympics, and they work well off of each other.”
Since 1992, the USA squad in basketball has captured every gold medal but one in the 2004 games that took place in Athens.
Assistant Director of Student Engagement Derek Pooley is very excited about this years Olympic Games. He enjoys a different kind of ice sport, while taking inspiration from two athletes that he believes have help changed the landscape for diversity in all sports.
“Gus Kenworthy and Adam Rippon,” he said. “I think they are the best because they are the only two U.S. athletes that are openly gay males. This is not something super common in the past. For that I applaud them and will support them.”
Kenworthy went on to win the silver medal in freestyle skiing in Sochi 2014. Rippon, on the other hand, has won a plethora of gold medals in junior qualifying competitions, and is now looking to make his impact in PyeongChang.