Team USA's Megan Nick Wins Bronze in Aerial Skiing: Women Are 'Pushing the Sport'

Megan Nick, a Vermont native, won bronze in her Winter Olympics debut in women's aerials

Megan Nick

Team USA skier Megan Nick came in third during the women's aerials competition at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.

According to the Associated Press, the Vermont native earned a bronze medal after landing a "back-full-double-full" in her Winter Olympics debut.

Nick finished with a score of 93.76, which placed her more than 10 points ahead of teammate Ashley Caldwell, who finished in fourth with a score of 83.71.

"There were a lot of girls on the triple," Nick said after her podium finish. "So I knew I had to lay down some nice triple-twisting doubles if I wanted to place well in the competition."

The medal is the first for America in women's individual aerials since Team USA's Nikki Stone won gold in 1998, the AP said.

"Knowing that I was in third and she got knocked to fourth," Nick said of Caldwell just missing out on earning a medal, according to Sports Illustrated, "that was a bittersweet moment."

Caldwell, who had trouble landing her final trick attempt, said wanted to celebrate with Nick despite coming up short.

"I respect all the athletes out there, but they also, I feel like, respect me," Caldwell, 28, said after the competition. "They know also how hard this is. And the hugs make it end, but it also makes you feel better."

The gold medal went to Chinese skier Mengtao Xu (108.61), who finished just ahead of Hanna Huskova (107.95) of Belarus.

"I'm so proud of [Mengtao], and I'm so proud of Megan Nick and I'm so proud of Hanna Huskova," Caldwell said of the medalists, as reported by Sports Illustrated. "They're incredible athletes, and there's always heartbreak amongst great success."

"The Olympics [are] incredibly stressful, and we put a lot of heart into what we do," she added later, "All of these athletes have been experiencing stress like never before. One way or the other, time is inevitable, and it's over now. But the stress is over too."

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Nick said the competition on Monday emphasized how women are "pushing the sport" of skiing.

"It's just great to see women who are pushing the sport be successful as well," she said, "because it inspires more people and more women to believe that they can do it as well. It's really important to have so many girls on the triple tonight, as well as have someone who's competing triples end up on top."

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