Kelsey Stewart (7) celebrates after hitting a solo home run against Japan during their Playoff Round match of the WBSC Women's Softball World Championship on August 11, 2018 in Chiba, Japan.
Kelsey Stewart didn’t get to take the Olympic softball diamond in 2020, but a diamond of a different sort will make it a memorable year nonetheless.
Stewart announced her engagement on Instagram Monday evening, complete with pictures of her and her happy fiancé plus the aforementioned rock on her finger. She added: “Found my person for life!!! You can call me a fiancée.”
The happy news comes just over one year on from when Stewart was named to the 15-player roster that would make up the first U.S. softball team to compete at the Olympic Games since the sport was dropped from the Olympic program following the 2008 Games in Beijing. Team USA qualified for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 back in 2018 at the world championships, with Stewart getting the game-winning hit in the gold-medal game against Japan.
But 2020 of course did not go according to plan. Following the postponement of the Olympic Games to 2021 in March, Stewart’s year ground to a halt. She was set to get back on the field in June with the independent Scrap Yard Fast Pitch, but joined her teammates in a walkout following a social media post by the team was used for political purposes against the players’ wishes. The players went on to form a new team, This Is Us, going on to play a series against the USSSA Pride.
Stewart can now look forward not only to married life, but making her Olympic debut next summer with Team USA. She also plans to keep using her voice to fight for what she believes in.
“I want little girls going through softball to know they can be authentically themselves,” she told TeamUSA.org in September. “They don’t have to mask who they are to fit in. They can own who they are and love the color of their skin and love their natural hair and be themselves while being awesome at softball.”