CLARKS SUMMIT -- The U.S. took home a bronze medal Sunday night in the figure skating team event and a big part of that was thanks to Adam Rippon's flawless performance and third-place finish.
People in Clarks Summit could not stop talking about Sunday's performance, a performance that certainly made northeastern Pennsylvania proud.
At almost every turn on Routes 6 and 11 in South Abington Township and Clarks Summit are signs supporting Olympic figure skater Adam Rippon. The 28-year-old Clarks Summit native was chosen to represent the United States at the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, and after his debut Olympic performance, he is now a medal holder, too.
"Absolutely fantastic that we have a champion," said Sonia Wysochansky. "We have a lot of champions, but at least he is recognized. A lot of our children are very well educated and very well versed in their particular sports and efforts."
Rippon has been working toward this goal since he was a kid. He just missed qualifying for the 2014 Winter Olympics. Now, four years later, business owners and folks around Clarks Summit can't believe this is actually happening.
"Just having somebody from our hometown representing us over in South Korea, it's just a feather in our cap," said Carol Hosier.
Fast forward to Rippon's first performance ever on Olympic ice. It was the men's free skate for the team event. Rippon landed two triple axels.
"Unbelievable," said Woody Wilson. "I'm a Packers fan. I was screaming like the Packers were on."
Rippon's score of 172.98 helped the United States take home a bronze medal in the team event.
Rippon finished behind the skaters from Russia and Canada, both of whom fell during their performances.
Social media and some of his biggest hometown fans were outraged with Rippon's third-place finish. Rippon responded on Good Morning America.
"I think we need to get those people who think I was ripped off on a judging panel immediately!" he laughed.
"I thought he did a great performance. I really don't know the judge's criteria, but I thought he did really well," Wysochansky added.
Adam Rippon still has a shot at winning a gold medal in the individual competition. His next Olympic performance will be this Friday, starting with the short program, and, of course, Clarks Summit and the rest of northeastern Pennsylvania are wishing him luck!