On Monday evening, the popular American ice dancing duo, the "Shib Sibs," won bronze in the highly competitive Olympics ice dancing competition. Many on social media were absolutely thrilled after watching the skating siblings secure victory, enthusiastically commending the duo's beautiful performance and congratulating them on their well-earned medals.
Maia and Alex Shibutani came in third place with a final score of 192.59. The gold medal went to Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada, who had a score of 206.07. The silver went to France's Guillaume Cizeron and Gabriella Papadakis, with a score of 205.28.
For their free dance, the pair skated to Coldplay's "Paradise," because, as Alex told Entertainment Weekly, the duo wanted "PyeongChang to be our “Paradise.” As it turns out, their Olympic aspirations were achieved — and Alex gratefully reflected on the siblings' special Olympic moment on Twitter, saying:
Last night was a dream that became a reality. [Maia] and I have worked so hard for this! Proud to be the first ice dance team of Asian descent to win a medal at the [Olympics] ...
We have become successful BECAUSE we are siblings and family. Not in spite of that fact. We have challenged ourselves to grow, innovate, and embrace what makes us different from other teams BECAUSE our differences are what make us unique ...
Believe in your dreams and surround yourself with people who nurture and believe in your dreams as much as you do. Sometimes the journey can be lonely, but fortunately, [Maia] and I have always had each other ...
On Twitter, people were endlessly enthusiastic for the siblings, expressing how proud they were of the brother-sister duo, with many noting that they became emotional as they watched the siblings secure victory. Indeed, one user tweeted, "i've been crying ever since i woke up and there seems no sign of it stopping, i'm so extraordinarily happy and proud of you. ITS WHAT YOU DESERVE."
The Shibutani siblings have been skating together since they were young children (Maia was four and Alex was seven). The siblings' mother, Naomi, told Time this month that the pair have always had each others' backs, saying " ... They have always been each other’s best friend ... When they were little, Alex was very protective of Maia. As they have gotten older, I don’t sense any seniority between them. They really are on equal footing.”
After working hard for many years, the siblings made their Olympic debut in Sochi, Russia in 2014, where they placed ninth. Since then, they have had their sights set on PyeongChang, with Alex telling NBC News back in 2016 that the duo hoped to make their mark there. "With our eyes kind of turned toward 2018 in South Korea, we’re hoping we can carve out some history for ourselves," he said. "That’s a lot of time between now and then. It doesn’t feel like a lot of time, but we’re excited to push ourselves," Alex added.
Maia echoed similar sentiments this year before the duo arrived in PyeongChang, telling PEOPLE, “We feel really good and excited heading into our second Olympic Games ... We learned so much from our first experience in Sochi. It inspired us a lot, but since then our career has really taken off ... We came away incredibly motivated ..."
As it turns out, this post-Sochi motivation has absolutely paid off, with the siblings winning coveted Olympic medals. It is very clear that many people around the world are incredibly proud of the duo's accomplishments and are very much looking forward to seeing what comes next for the accomplished skating siblings.