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Four North American women advanced to the heats on the first day of medal competition at the 2015 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships, with American Sophie Caldwell leading the crew in 21st in Thursday’s classic-sprint qualifier. Poland's Justyna Kowalczyk won the qualifier by 0.24 seconds, and Kikkan Randall missed advancing by 3.22 seconds in 36th.


Reese Hanneman came within 0.45 seconds of becoming the third American man to make the World Cup heats this season, and Jessie Diggins was just over a second shy of qualifying in her first race back since getting sick post-Sochi. The two logged top-40 results again on Saturday, along with Ida Sargent, in the World Cup Finals skiathlons.


About halfway through the men's quarterfinal, things were looking pretty good for the Americans. Andy Newell, who qualified in fifth, was up front behind teammate Simi Hamilton in the lead, but a troublesome downhill descent took Newell out of the running. Hamilton fell behind in the slushy conditions and placed fifth in the heat for 23rd overall and Newell ended up 26th.