The defending Vancouver silver medalist in the event dominated the downhill portion of the race, finishing a whopping .47 ahead of closest competitor Lara Gut of Switzerland in a sport that often distinguishes winners and losers by hundredths of a second.
Between rounds, she hit Twitter to send up a sweet message to her departed grandfather, writing "My grandpa is smiling down at me from heaven and saying I can be proud no matter what happens! This one's for you Grandpa Denny:) #discotime"
Then at 3 AM Pacific, it was go time for the decisive slalom round. Despite struggling with the top part of the course, finishing just 13th in the round and posting a slower time than eight of the eventual top 10 finishers, she held on the claim bronze with a combined time of 2:35.15. Maria Hoefl-Reisch of Germany defended her gold medal from the 2010 Olympics with a time of 2:34.62, while Nicole Hosp claimed the silver, which represented Austria's second alpine medal of the Sochi Games.
Mancuso's bronze medal gave the talented skiier new bragging rights. She joins speed skater Bonnie Blair and short track star Apolo Ohno as the only Winter Olympians hailing from the United States to earn individual medals at three separate Games. The win also padded her lead as America's most decorated female Olympic skiier, giving her four total, and two more than any other woman.
Alpine skiing at the 2014 Winter Olympics resumes Feb. 11 at 11 PM Pacific time with the women's downhill competition.