The U.S. men's hockey team cleared another hurdle in its pursuit of gold, and the Americans seized the overall medal lead.

Here's a recap of Wednesday's action at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

U.S. Routs Czech Republic; Russia Eliminated

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The U.S. men's hockey team routed the Czech Republic 5-2 behind goals from James van Riemsdyk (of the NHL's Toronto Maple Leafs), Dustin Brown (Los Angeles Kings) and Zach Parise (Minnesota Wild).

The Americans advanced to Friday's semifinal round to face play Canada, which squeaked past Latvia 2-1 on a late power-play goal by Shea Weber (Nashville Predators).

Finland eliminated Russia 3-1 behind an early goal from Teemu Selanne (Anaheim Ducks) and 37 saves from goalie Tuukka Rask (Boston Bruins). The host country last won a gold medal in men's hockey at the 1992 Olympics at Albertville, France.

In the other quarterfinal game, Sweden dominated Slovenia 5-0 as goalie Henrik Lundqvist (New York Rangers) recorded the shutout. Sweden faces Finland in Friday's other semifinal.

 

American Ted Ligety Wins Giant Slalom

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Powered by a lightning-fast first run, American Ted Ligety won the giant slalom at the Sochi Games on Wednesday and became the first U.S. man to win two Olympic gold medals in Alpine events. Ligety's first gold came in the combined event at Turin, Italy in 2006.

France's Steve Missillier and Alexis Pinturault won silver and bronze, respectively.

 

U.S. Takes Bronze and Silver in Women's Bobsled

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Canadians Kaillie Humphries and Heather Moyse won the women's two-person bobsledding competition, edging Americans Elana Meyers and Lauryn Williams by 0.10 second. The United States' Jamie Greubel and Aja Evans claimed the bronze medal.

The dual medals represented the first time two U.S. women's bobsleds earned podium spots at an Olympic Games.

Williams became the fifth Olympian to medal in events at both the Summer and Winter Games, adding her silver to the gold medal she won in the 4-by-100-meter relay at the London Summer Olympics in 2012. She also won a silver in the 100-meter dash at the Athens Summer Olympics in 2004.

Meyers became the first U.S. woman bobsledder in history to win two medals.

 

Ole Einar Bjoerndalen Wins Olympic Record 13th Medal

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Norwegian biathlete Ole Einar Bjoerndalen became the most decorated Winter Olympian ever when his country's team won the first Olympic mixed relay.

The gold was Bjoerndalen's 13th overall Winter Games medal and eighth gold. He won gold in the men's sprint biathlon earlier in the Games.

 

Medal Count

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Thanks to skier Ted Ligety's gold in giant slalom and the bronze and silver haul in women's bobsled, the U.S. surged back into the overall medal lead with 23, including seven golds.

United States (23)
7 gold; 5 silver; 11 bronze

Russia (22)
6 gold; 9 silver; 7 bronze

Netherlands (22)
6 gold; 7 silver; 9 bronze

Norway (20)
9 gold; 4 silver; 7 bronze

Canada (18)
5 gold; 9 silver; 4 bronze

Overall Medal Table

Sources: Sochi Winter Olympics and NBC Olympics