2023 Pan American GamesBoxing NewsMorelle McCane

Morelle McCane: Bringing women’s boxing to the forefront of Cleveland’s history

by Luke Santangelo, USA Boxing

In the world of boxing, where every punch thrown and every knockout scored can define a boxer’s legacy, Morelle McCane is creating her own path to history. Her journey, marked by both triumph and tragedy, embodies the resilience and determination that characterize the spirit of a true Olympian.

Long before she officially entered the world of Olympic-style boxing, Morelle and her brother shared a special bond. The story of Morelle McCane's love for boxing began in her family's kitchen in Cleveland. Here, she and her brother would often find themselves shadow boxing in the kitchen. At the age of 17, during her senior year of high school, McCane started her boxing journey. It was a late start compared to many of her peers, but she quickly made up for lost time with her dedication and unwavering commitment.

However, Morelle’s boxing journey began with an unimaginable loss. After her first fight in the ring, her brother tragically passed away. The grief and pain were overwhelming, leading her to step away from the sport she had just started to embrace. But Morelle McCane is not one to be kept down for long. With time to heal and reflect, she made her comeback, returning to boxing with a renewed sense of purpose and a determination to honor her brother's memory.

Her growth in self-control has been a defining aspect of her career. Learning to harness her emotions and channel them into her fights has transformed her into a formidable force in the ring.

To Morelle, family is the core of her journey, with her mother known to be her biggest fan. In the arena, her mother's unwavering support is unmistakable. Her cheers for Morelle are both loud and filled with emotion and can be heard from anywhere in the arena.

Morelle’s greatest motivation now comes from her nieces and nephews, who have begun to follow in her footsteps and take up boxing themselves. Morelle has embraced the role of their biggest fan, offering guidance, unwavering support, and a shining example of what dedication and determination can achieve. Her influence extends beyond the ring as she nurtures the next generation of boxers in her family.

Morelle is not just breaking barriers; she's setting new standards for women in boxing. As she looks to become the first female boxer and fifth straight boxer to qualify to an Olympic Games from Cleveland, she carries the weight of history on her shoulders.  

"I would be so honored to be the first female boxer to qualify from Cleveland. I would be going under the category of greatness." Stated Morelle McCane. 

McCane has been tremendous in the ring as she was crowned champion at the 2023 Gee Bee International Tournament, 2022 USA Boxing International Invitational, 2021 USA Boxing Elite National Championships, 2021 National Golden Gloves, and 2020 USA Boxing Elite National Championships. She also secured silver at the 2023 Czech Republic Grand Prix. She is coached by Terrence Montgomery and Marlon “Push” Davis out of Bob Davis Boxing Club and credits them for her successes.

Her success is paving the way for other young female athletes who aspire to achieve greatness in the sport of boxing.

"When people see me fight, I don’t want them to say I fight like a dude. I want them to say 'oh my God, that girl can fight,'" stated Morelle when asked about the growth of female boxing and her vision for the sport.

Her passion for the sport is matched only by her determination to see female boxers flourish, with more opportunities and recognition. As she continues to break barriers and pave the way for the future of female boxing, she leaves a legacy of strength, determination, and unwavering commitment to her dreams. 

But it's not just her dedication that sets her apart; during her fights, Morelle's vibrant personality shines through. Morelle combines this blend of intensity and charisma that makes her fights a must-watch event.

"When I get in the ring, it is my time to shine,” McCane on describing her boxing personality. “When I get in there, I give it my all, and all of me includes my personality. And it is more fun that way. When I’m having fun, I am at my best because the intensity is there, the focus is there, but the relaxation that you need is there as well."

Morelle McCane's journey is far from over, and she continues to inspire her family, and the growth of women's boxing. As she pushes forward, she carries the hopes and dreams of a city, a family, and a generation of female boxers on her shoulders, proving that greatness knows no boundaries. Morelle McCane isn't just a fighter; she's a beacon of triumph and a testament to the incredible spark that lights up the world inside and outside the ring.