Ali Aguilar and Rachel Garcia are silver belles…
The 25-year-old Latina softball player and the 24-year-old Latina softball player are the first American Latinx athletes to claim a medal at the 2020 Tokyo Games.
Aguilar, Garcia and their Team USA mates had to settle for the silver after losing the gold medal match in softball to Japan by a score of 2-0.
As with any high-stakes softball game, there were many little moments that ultimately proved crucial. But the entire game was summed up in the bottom of the sixth. With two on and one out and slugger Amanda Chidester up, a moment that will be remembered for a long time by the players in this game unfolded.
Chidester hit a rocket down the third-base line that smashed into Japan third baseman Yu Yamamoto‘s arm. At that point, the ball could’ve gone anywhere, and it seemed certain the Americans were going to get one run and maybe even two. But the ball bounded right to shortstop Mana Atsumi, who made a leaping catch and doubled off a runner to end the inning.
The stunned looks on the U.S. faces following that moment summed up the game.
“Fortune went the way of Japan on that,” said U.S. coach Ken Eriksen. “It wasn’t our day, we had some bad luck.”
It’s the first Olympic medal for Aguilar and Garcia.