Mexico national team pays tribute to earthquake rescuers
SAN LUIS POTOSI, Mexico -- The Mexican national team paid tribute to earthquake rescuers and victims in an emotional pregame ceremony ahead of El Tri's 3-1 win over Trinidad and Tobago in World Cup qualifying on Friday.
A 7.1 magnitude earthquake took over 300 lives and caused devastating damage to property in Mexico City and surrounding states and Friday's World Cup qualifier was the first time the Mexican national team had played a game since.
A giant Mexican flag was unveiled as the Mexican anthem played and players Diego Reyes and Miguel Layun couldn't hold back the tears during the minute's silence, for which players and fans raised their right fists into the air in solidarity with those affected.
Rescue dog "Frida" became one of the lasting images of the rescue operation, saving 12 lives in the rubble after the earthquake, and was given a special award by Mexico captain Andres Guardado. The crowd responded by chanting the dog's name.
The ticket sales from the sold out qualifier were donated to help those affected by the earthquake and outside Estadio Alonso Lastras scarves with "Fuerza Mexico" were sold for $2.70, with all proceeds going to the same cause.
In total, the Mexican federation has donated or raised close to $1 million to help those affected by the earthquake.
Trinidad and Tobago took the lead in the second half in the game itself, before Hirving Lozano leveled and Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez put Mexico ahead, with Hector Herrera adding the third.
West Ham's Hernandez dedicated the goal and victory to those affected by the earthquake.
"For all of you. For all Mexico. For all most affected people. For all the people that helped out and continue to help," he wrote on his official Twitter account.
Tom Marshall covers Liga MX and the Mexican national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @MexicoWorldCup.