A Canadian hockey player refused to wear a silver medal after losing to Team USA at the Winter Olympics.
The tight game featured a thrilling shootout resulting in the United States winning its first Olympic gold in two decades in women’s hockey.
Rather than wear the silver medal, Canadian defenseman Jocelyne Larocque made news after taking the medal off immediately after it was placed around her neck.
Footage from the scene showed her holding the medal in her hand after removing it.
Larocque was asked why she couldn’t wear the medal.
“Just hard,” she said. “We were going for gold.”
When asked if the silver medal was any consolation, she responded, “I mean, yeah. Once we reflect. But now, not at the moment.”
— NBC Olympics (@NBCOlympics) February 22, 2018
However, after several minutes, an official with the IOC came by and told her she had to wear it. After the conversation, she agreed, although The Globe and Mail indicated that the ceremony was almost over at that point.
“It’s not clear if she ever put it back on,” the Canadian outlet said.
Olympic defeat is not something the Canadian women’s ice hockey team is used to, having won gold the last four times, three of them against bitter rival the United States. As a result, many on the team were stunned, devasted, or in tears, according to the Globe.
Larocque was slammed by some for her decision while others defended her.
U.S. coach Robb Stauber was among those who empathized with her, having failed to get gold in the 2014 Winter Olympics, which the Canadians won.
“I definitely understand it. It’s a very heated rivalry,” he said.
“Ten players were with us in 2014, they know what it feels like,” Stauber said, reported Deseret News. “We’re very fortunate that we’re on the other end of it.”