SOCHI, Russia –The U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team is one of three finalists for the Team of the 2014 Paralympic Winter Games and one of five finalists for the Moment of the 2014 Games for its 1-0 gold-medal game victory over Russia, the United States Olympic Committee announced today. Additionally, Declan Farmer (Tampa, Fla.) is one of four finalists for the Best Male Paralympian. The Best of U.S. Awards is a new USOC program that recognizes outstanding performances from the Olympic and Paralympic Games, as determined by fan vote.
Fan voting on the Paralympic side begins today (March 16) at 10 a.m. ET and continues through March 21 on the U.S. Paralympics Facebook page. The awards will be announced during the Best of U.S. Awards Show, scheduled to air April 7 on NBC Sports Network.
A nominating committee, comprised of USOC, athlete and media representatives, selected the finalists for the individual athlete and team categories, as well as the Moment of the Games, based on nominations from each National Governing Body.
Team USA became the first nation to win back-to-back Paralympic gold medals in sled hockey by defeating Russia, 1-0, in the gold-medal game Saturday (March 15). Josh Sweeney (Phoenix, Ariz.) scored the game-winning goal and Steve Cash (Overland, Mo.) made six saves. Overall, the U.S. posted preliminary round wins over Italy (5-1) and South Korea (3-0), plus a semifinal triumph against Canada (3-0). Team USA avenged its only loss, a 2-1 setback versus Russia in the preliminary round, by topping the host country in the gold medal rematch.
Farmer tied for the Team USA lead in both goals (3) and points (5). He tallied two goals and an assist in the 3-0 semifinal win against Canada. In his Paralympic debut, the 16 year old notched a goal and an assist versus Italy.