In what may likely be her final Paralympics appearance, Asya Miller and the American women’s goalball team won silver Friday, falling to Turkey in the gold medal match 9-2.
The Turkish squad jumped out to a 6-1 lead at halftime, keeping the Americans scoreless for the majority of the first half. Miller delivered a personal highlight, scoring the American’s second and final goal after the gold medal was out of reach.
The silver medal ends a prolific run for the Americans at the Tokyo Games. The team entered Friday’s gold medal match with a 5-1 record, including a victory over Turkey in group play. They advanced to the final after a marathon semifinal against Brazil, which ended after two overtime periods and penalty throws.
The Americans were also without one of their top offensive players, Amanda Dennis, due to a pre-game injury.
“That was my decision,” said U.S. head coach Jake Czechowski. “I’m always going to err on the side of caution for my athletes. We want to play and compete and beat everybody in the world, but never at the expense of health.”
The 2020 silver medal adds to the already decorated neck of Miller. The six-time Paralympian now holds one gold, two silver and two bronze medals, the majority of them in women’s goalball.
Miller hinted that the 2020 Games would be the last of her Paralympics career, but she has remained open about continuing with Team USA beyond Tokyo. If this is the end, the Portland native exits as one of the most decorated goalball players in U.S. history.