The United States Olympic Committee today announced the 2014 U.S. Paralympic Team that will compete in the upcoming Sochi 2014 ParalympicWinter Games, happening March 7-16. The 80-member USA team includes 14 athletes from the state of Colorado. The Colorado athletes will be competing in 5 of the 6 winter Paralympic sports: alpine skiing, snowboarding, sled hockey and Nordic skiing.
Defending gold medalist from the 2010 Vancouver Paralympics include alpine skier Alana Nichols as well as eight returning members of the gold-medal winning 2010 sled hockey team that includes Nikko Landeros. Nordic skier Alison Jones returns for her eighth visit to the Paralympic games and will be looking to add to her seven medial wins.
Two athletes among the Colorado troop also competed in the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Monica Bascio who competed in the hand cycling events will shift to Nordic skiing. Alana Nichols who played a strong position on Team USA wheelchair basketball, will compete in alpine skiing.
The Colorado athletes are joining the largest Team USA winter Paralympic team ever assembled. USOC CEO Scot Blackmun commented, “I am confident that this group of talented athletes is going to represent our country well both on and off the ice and snow. With the expanded platform of television coverage provided in partnership with NBC, these athletes are not only going to captivate the country, but also inspire the next generation of athletes following in their footsteps.”
The 2014 Sochi Paralympics will have 50 hours of television coverage on NBC and NBC Sport Network channels. Opening ceremonies will start the broadcast series on NBCSN on March 7. See the NBC Olympic web site for the full schedule. NBC also has 2 mobile apps: NBC Olympics and NBC Sports that will feature videos from the games.
The Colorado roster for the 2014 Sochi Paralympic Games:
Allison Jones (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
Melanie Schwartz (Aspen, Colo.)
Alana Nichols (Denver, CO)
Jasmin Bambur (Granby, Colo.)
Gerald Hayden (Winter Park, Colo.)
Ian Jansing (Granby, Colo.)
Jon Lujan (Littleton, Colo.)
Scott Meyer (Frisco, Colo.)