That left only the final run, and Mazdzer did exactly what he needed to do to snare the historic medal for the United States.
And, he made history early Sunday, winning silver in the men's luge. Luger Chris Mazdzer added a second medal to Team USA's total with a silver in luge.
Felix Loch faltered within sliding distance of a third consecutive Winter Olympic gold medal in the men's luge here today as an error-strewn final run enabled David Gleirscher to leapfrog him for a shock victory.
Roman Repilov, an Olympic Athlete from Russian Federation, was in third place entering the final two runs and faltered on his third run to allow Mazdzer to leapfrog him as well.
Mazdzer then unleashed a third-round run of 47.534, the finest time of the entire competition to date, that vaulted him into second place, just behind Felix Loch's 2:22.259.
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Mazdzer had a little trouble in run 4, but held it together and it looked like he would end up with a bronze medal.
Mazdzer competed in the past two Winter Games and placed 13th both times.
The surprise stemmed from a subpar performance this past World Cup season, which saw a top finish of sixth place. Germany's Johannes Ludwig rounded out the podium with a time of 3:10.932. Once ranked No. 3 in the world as recently as the 2015-16 season, Mazdzer hadn't medaled since - until the Pyeonchang Games.
Fellow American Taylor Morris finished in 18th place and Tucker West did not make it to the final run.
Erin Hamlin is the only USA luge athlete of any gender to medal in singles competition at the Olympics, having won bronze in 2014.