Moral victories not enough: Diggins fifth in skiathlon

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — The U.S. racer Jessie Diggins finished fifth Saturday in the women’s skiathlon. That marked the best individual finish for an American in an Olympic cross-country ski race since 1976, when Bill Koch took silver — still the only medal the United States has won in the discipline.

 Jessie Diggins (No. 3) in Saturday's skiathlon // Getty Images

Jessie Diggins (No. 3) in Saturday's skiathlon // Getty Images

It is a measure of the expectations the American team has for these PyeongChang Games that, afterward, Diggins — golden glitter on her cheeks — was pleased but hardly elated.

Moral victories are no longer good enough.

The Americans are here for medals. Diggins’ performance Saturday hints at what should — should — be to come.

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