Claressa Shields made history Thursday night when she became first U.S. fighter to win a gold medal in women’s boxing.
The Flint, Mich., native slugged her way to a 19-12 victory over Russia’s Nadezda Torlopova. Though she has only been on the international fight scene for less than two years, Shields is on her way to stardom. To help you become acquainted with this rising star, NewsOne has provided some quick facts you may not have known about this rising phenom.
1) Heading into the Olympic trials in Spokane, Wash., Shields had a 19-0 record. [Source: NPR.com]
2) Shields was once nicknamed the “16-year-old sensation.” [Source: NPR.com]
Watch Claressa Shields on her road to London:
3) Currently, Shields is a student at Flint Northwestern High School [Source: The Detroit News.com]
4) While she was edged out of the women’s world championships in China earlier this year, Shields still recovered to earn a spot on the U.S. women’s boxing team. [Source: HuffPost Sports]
5) Shields’ cockiness in the ring recently earned her a comparison to Muhammad Ali in the New York Times. [Source: The New York Times]
Watch Claressa Shields return after a triumphant victory overseas:
6) Shields is #12 in the middleweight world ranking. [Source: Spiegel Online.com]
7) Shields has cited legendary boxer Sugar Ray Robinson as her greatest inspiration. [Source: Detroit Free Press]
8) After her father was released from prison, Shields would accompany him when he trained at Berston Field House in Flint. Here, Shields first fell in love with boxing and began her training. [Source: Spiegel Online.com]
Watch Claressa Shields during a training session:
9) Jason Crutchfield, who trained Shields, also acts as a father figure to help keep her on track. [Source: Spiegel Online.com]
10) Shields’s successful gold medal bout was shown on a large screen in Flint Northwestern High School’s auditorium. [Source: Detroit Free Press]