The 15 biggest moments for women in the Summer Olympics

Since 1900, when women first began competing in the Olympic Games, there have been many unforgettable moments. 

3. An upset at softball send-off

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    Japan's Yukiyo Mine, left, and pitcher Yukiko Ueno celebrate after winning the gold medal against the US women's softball team in the gold medal softball game in the Beijing Olympics.
    Amy Sancetta / AP
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The 2008 softball competition at the Beijing Olympics had special significance due to the International Olympic Committee’s decision to remove softball from the program for the 2012 Olympics.

The 2008 gold medal game, which may be the last Olympic softball game ever played, pitted the American team, known for dominating the Olympics, against the Japanese, and star pitcher Yukiko Ueno.

The US team had walked away with the gold in the previous three Olympic Games, and in 2004 they had swept the games, with a perfect 9-0 record. But Ueno, considered the fastest pitcher in women’s softball – with a 75.19 mph fastball – is the only pitcher to have ever produced a perfect game at the Olympics, against China in 2004.

During the semi-finals against Australia and the final game against the US, Ueno pitched 28 innings, and lead her team to a 3-1 victory over the US.

Though a stunning loss for the US, the two teams put differences aside. At the medal ceremony they joined the bronze medal-winners, Australia, to spell out “2016” in softballs in front of the home plate, a hopeful message for the future of Olympic softball.

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