Grassroots News

Grassroots in the News: December 12

by USA Boxing

Living in Colorado Springs, Colorado, there are plenty of ways to escape from all the pressures of daily life.

For 20-year-old Sierra Martinez, that means taking hikes.

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El Paso amateur boxer Kayla Gomez is headed to the USA Boxing High Performance Selection Camp in Colorado Springs, Colo., as part of the next phase in her quest to quality for the 2024 Olympic Games for the United States.

But getting there wasn't easy.

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Seven U.S. boxers moved one step closer to the Paris Games at the Olympic Trials this week in Lafayette, Louisiana.

Five trials champions, plus two finalists, advanced to a January selection camp to decide boxers who will attempt to qualify for the Olympics in international competition. Most national team boxers had byes into the selection camp.

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LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)—Nine boxing national champions were just crowned at the United States Olympic Team Trials at the Cajundome in Lafayette, with the opportunity to represent their country in 2024 still up for grabs.

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PRICHARD, Ala. (WPMI) — There's a boxing hall of famer in Prichard working to help our youth in and out of the ring. Gabriel Dortch grew up in Prichard and started boxing when he was only 6 years old. Two decades ago, he combined his love of the sport and his love for the community to create Prichard Boxing Academy. Just this weekend, Dortch was inducted into the Southern Association USA Boxing Hall of Fame. He is the first person from Prichard to be awarded the honor.

"I had to call president of the LBC to make sure that it wasn't a prank or nothing."

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The youngest child in a family has the benefit of being able to follow in their siblings’ footprints.

But when your older sister is a doctor and your older brother just became a world champion boxer, those footprints can feel substantial.

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A year ago, Malachi Georges was a novice level boxer competing in local tournaments in New Jersey. On Saturday afternoon, he became U.S. Olympic Trials champion.

The 20-year-old southpaw from Teaneck, N.J. took a big step towards his dream of competing at the 2024 Olympics, outboxing Danel Brown of Philadelphia, Pa. to win the 203-pound title by a 5-0 decision at the Cajundome Convention Center in Lafayette, La. Three of the judges scored the bout a 30-27 shutout, while two of the judges found a round to give to Brown, turning in 29-28 scores for Georges.

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What brought 38-year-old DeRae Crane out of retirement and back into the ring for the U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Boxing in Lafayette, Louisiana, this week?

“Everyone has a ‘woulda, coulda, shoulda’ story, and it’s like nails on a chalkboard for me,” Crane said. “I didn’t want to be that guy.”

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