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Northug among four Norwegians to reach men's sprint free semis

<p>Petter Northug was one of four Norwegian cross country skiers to reach the semifinals of the men's sprint free competition on Tuesday.</p>

Krasnaya Polyana, Russia (SportsNetwork.com) - Petter Northug was one of four Norwegian cross country skiers to reach the semifinals of the men's sprint free competition on Tuesday.

Northug, a bronze medalist in this event at the Vancouver Games, finished fourth in his quarterfinal heat, but was awarded a spot in the next round as a lucky loser after his time of 3 minutes, 36.70 seconds ended up as the second fastest among those skiers to finish outside of the top two in their respective heats.

Norway's Ola Vigen Hattestad won the first heat, while compatriots Anders Gloeersen and Eirik Brandsdal went 1-2 in the second heat.

Sweden's Emil Joensson and Teodor Peterson finished first and second, respectively, in the third heat, while fellow Swede Marcus Hellner secured the first lucky loser spot with a time of 3:33.62.

Russians Sergey Ustiugov and Alexey Petukhov were 1-2 in the fourth heat, while Italy's Federico Pellegrino pulled in just ahead of Austria's Bernhard Tritscher in the fifth and final heat.

Canadian Alex Harvey, who took bronze in this event at the 2013 World Championships, finished fourth in his heat, while Americans Simeon Hamilton and Andrew Newell also missed out on the semifinals after finishing outside the top two.

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