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Stefanie Dolson becomes first out LGBTQ Team USA athlete to win Tokyo Olympics gold medal

Stefanie Dolson helped her 3x3 women's basketball team secure victory at the Tokyo Summer Games

stefanie dolson, basketball, gold
Stefanie Dolson, center, with her 3×3 Basketball teammates — Photo: USA Basketball 3×3 / Twitter

Stefanie Dolson has become the first LGBTQ U.S. Olympic athlete to win a gold medal at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.

Dolson and her 3×3 basketball teammates took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics after emerging victorious against the Russian Olympic Committee on Wednesday.

The team’s win also marked another historic achievement: Team USA’s first ever gold in women’s 3×3 basketball.

“I’m so proud of this team and myself too,” Dolson said after the match. “We fought so hard to get here and it wasn’t always easy and we’re really happy with what we’ve done.”

She added: “It gives me goosebumps [winning gold]. It’s special to be the first of anything but basketball runs deep in USA blood, so this is very special.”

Dolson currently plays for WNBA team Chicago Sky, where she is known as “Big Mama Stef.”

The team celebrated her gold medal in a series of tweets:

Dolson came out as LGBTQ in 2016, telling ESPN that she felt the call to “lead an authentic life in the open.”

“I know who I am, and I don’t care if people judge me,” she said.

A record number of out LGBTQ athletes are competing — and winning medals — at the 2021 Olympic Games, with over 160 present in Tokyo.

Analysis by OutSports has found that if the LGBTQ athletes were their own country, they would currently rank 12th in the world in terms of medals won.

The only other LGBTQ gold medal-winner thus far is Britain’s Tom Daley, who scooped gold in synchronized diving.

Daley said he was “incredibly proud I am a gay man and also an Olympic champion.”

“I feel very empowered by that,” he continued. “When I was younger I thought I was never going to be anything or achieve anything because of who I was. To be an Olympic champion now shows that you can achieve anything.”

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