SOCHI, Russia — A crash landing didn’t hurt their spirits for Virden pairs skaters Paige Lawrence and Rudi Swiegers on Wednesday at the Winter Olympic Games.
Lawrence, 23, and Swiegers, 26, placed 14th overall in the free skate after Lawrence’s fall on their difficult throw triple loop element. But the young pairs team, which has lived and trained in Virden for the past five years, was all smiles after competing in their first Olympics.
"I’ve had so much fun," Lawrence said. "When I got off the ice, I was like ‘I don’t want to get off,’ that’s why I kept curtsying, that’s all I could do. I would have stayed out there and curtsied to every person. I was having so much fun. It’s been the experience of a lifetime."
Lawrence and Swiegers, coached by Virden’s Patty Hole and former Canadian Olympic skater Lyndon Johnston of Hamiota, were one of three Canadian pairs teams in action. Kirsten Moore-Towers and Dylan Moscovitch finished fifth, while teammates Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford placed seventh.
Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov won gold and fellow Russians Ksenia Stolbova and Fedor Klimov took silver. Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy of Germany had to settle for bronze for the second straight Olympics.
» The Canadian Press-Brandon Sun