Timmy Brownell & Olivia Blatchford Clyne completed a gold medal run as an unseeded team in the second staging of a Mixed Doubles competition at the quadrennial Pan American Games Friday, November 3, in Santiago, Chile.
After saving a match ball in their tournament opener against 3/4 seeds Mexico Thursday, Brownell & Blatchford Clyne went on to dethrone Colombia’s defending gold medalists Miguel Rodriguez & Catalina Pelaez in the semifinals to reach the gold medal match on Friday.
The unseeded Americans took the opening game against Canadian top seeds George Crowne & Nicole Bunyan. Team USA were on the brink of a gold with three match balls up 10-7, but the Canadians rattled off four straight points to force a third game.
The U.S. took an early lead in the third and held their advantage to clinch the gold medal 11-6 after thirty-six minutes.
The result marks both players’ first medal of the tournament and first ever Pan Am Games medal for Brownell.
“They’re a tough team and we played a practice match against them a week ago,” Brownell said. “We were rolling with the punches, we knew they were going to come out firing. They were fresh and tough to play. We were up for the challenge and I’m happy with how we bounced back after the second game. That’s what it takes to win a gold medal. What a dream to come out on top.”
“We couldn’t have asked for anything more.” Blatchford Clyne said. “That first day being so hard meant that it was a breath here, a breath there, and we just had to be grateful for every moment. We can safely say that we got the job done. It was really fun, but it was hard, and the harder it is sometimes the more satisfying the win.”
The result adds to Team USA’s overall medal count of 100 gold medals as of Friday, leading the field by nearly fifty gold medals.
“It’s been unbelievable, we’ve respected all of the teams and knew it was going to be tough,” Brownell said. “I’m so happy that we were able to show our potential. From start to finish it was just such a pleasure to play together, we had so much fun. We’re so glad we could win a gold medal for the United States.”