Olympics 2012: Latina boxer Marlen Esparza goes for gold

Olympics 2012: Latina boxer Marlen Esparza goes for gold
U.S. Olympic boxer












UPDATE: Aug. 8, 2012: Marlen Esparza lost her semi-final match 10-8 against China's Ren Cancan. But she won a bronze medal and is the first U.S. woman to win a medal in Olympic boxing.

UPDATE Aug. 6, 2012: Marlen Esparza won her opening round over Karlha Magliocco of Venezuela in a 24-16 decision. She moves to the semi-finals and medal contention on Wednesday.


For the first time women's boxing will be part of the Olympics.

And Latina boxer Marlen Esparza is going for gold in the featherweight class.

Born in Texas to Mexican parents, Esparza  will make her Olympic debut on Monday at 1:30 p.m. London time or 7:30 a.m Central time.

At 5-foot-3 and 112 pounds Esparza doesn't look like a typical boxer. She  is a Cover Girl and has signed a contract with that cosmetics company. She also was featured in Vogue magazine.

"When I get ready for a fight, it's kind of like I'm getting ready for a date," Esparza told the Los Angeles Times. "I take a shower. Perfume. I shave. I fix my hair. I pray."

But the boxer is so busy that she admitted she doesn't have time to date.

She has won the USA Boxing national championship six straight times. For now her dream is an Olympic medal.

"The nationals are like high school; the Olympics are like final exams in college," Esparza told Fox News Latino.

After the Olympics, Esparza said she plans to finish college. But first come the Olympics.

"The headgear is like a mask. When you put it on, you feel like you can do anything. You’re not even you anymore," she told Vogue magazine pointing to the ring. “When I’m in there, I can do whatever I want.”

Esparza is a great role model to all Latinas. Let's hope she brings a medal home.

Filed under: Hispanic, Mexico, Olympics 2012

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