Feb. 8 - Snowboarder Sage Kotsenburg of the U.S. team wins first gold medal at the Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia. Gavino Garay reports. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION)
American Sage Kotsenburg laid down an almost flawless first run to win the first gold medal of the Sochi Games as snowboarding slopestyle made a spectacular Olympic debut on Saturday.
Kotsenburg's run, the third of the day, earned him 93.50 points, which proved enough to make him a surprise champion in a low-scoring contest where judges favored stylists over big jumpers.
In a news conference on Saturday afternoon, Kotsenburg told reporters his win felt surreal.
The American's score of 90.5 was enough to put him through to the final and confirmed that the absence from his routine of a "triple" - the trademark trick of the top X-Games riders - was not going to hurt his chances.
Before his run, Kotsenburg said he consulted his coach and called his brother about incorporating some new tricks into his routine.
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