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Latvia sweeps luge races, Sweeney wins 4th medal of season


SIGULDA, Latvia (AP) — Latvia swept a pair of luge World Cup races on home ice Sunday, and Emily Sweeney of the U.S. won her team-high fourth medal of the season by helping the Americans finish third in a team relay.

Kristers Aparjods won gold in the men’s singles race, his third career World Cup victory and his second in a row on the Sigulda track. He finished two runs in 1 minute, 35.228 seconds, winning by more than a quarter-second over Max Langenhan of Germany.

Langenhan finished in 1:35.481. Dominik Fischnaller of Italy, the World Cup men’s points leader, was third in 1:35.495.

Tucker West was the top U.S. finisher, placing 10th in 1:36.358. Jonny Gustafson was disqualified after a first-heat crash.

Sweeney, West and the doubles team of Zack Di Gregorio and Sean Hollander gave USA Luge its sixth medal of the season later Sunday in the team relay.

Latvia’s team of Aparjods, Elina Ieva Vitola and the doubles sled of Martins Bots and Roberts Plume prevailed in 2:12.111. Germany was second in 2:12.339 and the Americans finished in 2:12.948.

It was the first career World Cup medal for Di Gregorio and Hollander.

Sweeney’s other medals this season have all been silvers: she was second in a women’s singles race and a sprint race at Igls on the season’s opening weekend, then got another second-place finish in a women’s race at Park City before the Christmas break.

The World Cup season resumes with another series of races in Sigulda next weekend.


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