The Amazonas of Yaxunah start off every softball game with Maya battle cry, ending with a roaring mujeres fuertes!
Though the team started off in 2018 as an outlet to simply have some fun, the Amazonas and their unique style soon captured the attention of everyone in town and far beyond.
They are most famous for the fact that they play barefoot and wear the traditional Mestizo huipil. But make no mistake, though these women play mostly for fun, they are real athletes with a deep passion for the game.
“People often ask us why we wear no shoes and play in our huipiles, but the truth is that this is what we wear in our day-to-day life. It’s what is most comfortable for us,” says shortstop Nayeli Uicab. “Besides, there is nothing quite like the feeling of the field and earth directly beneath your feet.”
Over the past couple of years, the Amazonas have begun to really garner attention, which has made them celebrities in Yucatán. They now travel almost every weekend across southeastern Mexico to play in exhibition matches. Not bad for a team from a town with a population of just around 600 people.
Last year, the Amazonas made history when they filled Mérida’s 15,000-seat Kukulcán Alamo stadium in a match against another all-women’s team, La Natividad de Sucilá.
“There was so much fanfare and fireworks, and the chanting of the jam-packed stadium was simply electrifying. It was such a big moment for us and one we will always remember,” says outfielder Rosy Cuxin.
“It’s quite exciting!” says squad pitcher and captain Sitlali Poot. “It’s quite a big deal.”
Despite all living in Yaxunah, the members of the Amazonas originally came from rural communities across the state and range in age from teenagers to women in their late 50s.
“When I was a little girl, I loved going out and playing with the boys because a girls’ softball team was unthinkable to most in the community,” says Celia Lorenza Chan Canul, who plays first base. “When we got the team together in 2018, at first, my husband did not really approve. But when he saw how happy it made me, he eventually came around and became one of our greatest champions. Now that he has passed away, this game is my way of honoring his memory and the life we built.”