Monday, August 13, 2012

17 year old Claressa Shields Wins first U.S. women’s boxing gold in Olympic history

It does not matter how old you are, age is only a number. Claressa Shields born on March 17, 1995 and raised in Flint, Michigan. Claressa did something no other U.S. Woman has ever done in Olympic boxing history. I was watching this fight and 17 year old Claressa Shields, put a whipping on 34 year old Nadezda Torlopova of Russia. I had to write about this young lady she deserves to be known. Claressa Shields defeated her 19-12 on August 9, 2012 to claim the gold medal in the middleweight division. Claressa’s father was not around from the age of two through 9, he was in prison. Bo Shields Claressa’s father introduced Claressa’s to boxing at a young age. He boxed in underground leagues. Claressa’s father used to talk to her about Laila Ali piquing her curiosity in the sport. Bo Shields believed boxing was a man's sport and would not let Claressa pursue it until she turned eleven. Claressa trained at Berston Field House in Flint, under boxing coach Jason Crutchfield. Claressa grandmother encouraged her, not to accept restrictions based on her gender. Claressa won two Junior Olympic championships. She also competed in her first open-division tournament, the National Police Athletic League Championships, in the fall 2011. Claressa won the middleweight title and was named top overall fighter, and qualified for the U.S. Olympic trials. In February, she defeated the reigning national champion, Francon Crews. Then she defeated Andrecia Wasson the, 2010 world champion and Pittsburgh's Tika Hemingway to win the middleweight class. Claressa was unstoppable. Claressa won her weight class at the Women's Elite Continental Championships in Cornwall, Ontario, against three-time defending world champion Mary Spencer of Canada. She held an undefeated record of 25 wins and 0 losses at that point. After her victory at the U.S. Olympic trials it was originally reported that she would need only to finish in the top 8, at the 2012 AIBA Women's World Boxing Championships in Qinhuangdao, China, to qualify for the 2012 Olympics. There was a change in the rules on May 10. Just before Claressa first fight and the day after the contest began, Claressa would need to place in the top two from America. Claressa won her first fight, but was defeated by Savannah Marshall on May 13, 2012 leaving Claressa with her first loss. Her record was 26-1. Claressa chance of making Olympics was up in the air. It was determined on how Savannah Marshall's performance was and we all know how that turned out. It is a good thing Claressa’s father let her pursue it, because this young lady made history. You can best believe we are going to be seeing and hearing more about Claressa Shields. Woman Power!


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