Amy & Rachel Win Gold at 2023 Pan Am Games
by Barbara Wei
Tonight, at the Centro Nacional de Entrenamiento Olimpico in Santiago, Chile, Amy Wang and Rachel Sung earned gold in the Women’s Doubles event for Team USA. The UCLA college roommates excelled throughout the competition with commanding performances against ever more difficult challengers. In their semi-final match, they faced the Chilean team of Paulina Vega and Daniela Ortega Gomez, who had the whole crowd and country behind them. Stomps, and yells of “Chi, Chi, Chi, Le, Le, Le, Viva Chile” filled the stadium after every point the Chileans won. But, it was the American college students who prevailed 4-2. The Americans were confident, with Amy saying she “wasn’t nervous at all” despite the large home crowd.
The finals put more pressure on the American team, who found themselves down 2-1 in games to the Brazilian sister pair of Bruna and Giulia Takahashi. The spirited sisters played aggressively, and their deep attacks gave Amy and Rachel difficulty from the start. Yet, Amy and Rachel credit their win to their ability to keep each other calm.
“I believe in you”
The two roommates would say to each other when the going got tough. Sometimes, all that was needed was a quick glance to reassure each other. At 6-6 in the 7th, the game looked as close as ever. But then, a few glances of reassurance, and some mumbled “it’s Oks” later, the pair clinched the title with a final look, this time of celebration.