(MAR 19) --- A full squad of USA
Boxing’s top female boxers will test their skills against elite
women from north, central and south America at the 2012 Women’s
Continental Championships, April 4-7, at the NAV Centre in
Cornwall, Ontario, Canada. The United States will send a full
squad of 10 athletes to the event with the three Olympic Trials
champions joining the 2012 USA Boxing National Champions in the
seven non-Olympic weight divisions.
The competition will be the first
for flyweight Marlen Esparza (Houston, Texas), lightweight Queen
Underwood (Seattle, Wash.) and middleweight Claressa Shields
(Flint, Mich.) since winning gold at the first-ever U.S. Olympic
Team Trials for Women’s Boxing in mid-February. The seven
reigning national champions who will join the trials trio are:
light flyweight Alex Love (Monroe, Wash.), bantamweight
Christina Cruz (New York, N.Y.), featherweight Tiara Brown
(Lehigh Acres, Fla.), light welterweight Mikaela Mayer (Los
Angeles, Calif.), welterweight Raquel Miller (San Francisco,
Calif.), light heavyweight Franchon Crews (Baltimore, Md.) and
heavyweight Victoria Perez (Ventura, Calif.).
Six of the seven national champions competed in the Olympic
Trials before changing weight classes for the 2012 USA Boxing
National Championships with Perez being the lone Continental
Championships team member who was not an Olympic Trials
participant. Love, Brown and Miller all moved down in weight to
vie for spots on the Continental and World Championships squads
with Cruz, Mayer, and Crews all jumping up a weight division.
2000 Olympic Coach Israel Acosta (Milwaukee, Wis.), Bruce Kawano
(Pearl City, Hawaii) and Gloria Peek (Norfolk, Va.) will serve
as the coaching staff for the 2012 Continental Championships
with 2008 Olympic Team Manager Joe Smith (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
filling the same role in Canada. Dr. Ted Mills (Glen Cove, N.Y.)
will join the squad as Team Physician with Patricia Pliner
(Janesville, Wis.) working as the AIBA official for the event.
The 2012 Women’s Continental Championships team will convene at
the U.S. Olympic Training Center, March 25-April 1 for a
preparatory training camp before traveling to Canada for the
event. Preliminary round competition will begin on April 4 prior
to quarterfinal action on April 5 and the semifinal round on
April 6. Tournament finals will be contested on April 7 and Team
USA will return home on Sunday, April 8.
United States’ Women’s Continental Championships Team
106 lbs/48 kg: Alex Love, Monroe, Wash.
112 lbs/51 kg: Marlen Esparza, Houston, Texas
119 lbs/54 kg: Christina Cruz, New York, N.Y.
125 lbs/57 kg: Tiara Brown, Lehigh Acres, Fla.
132 lbs/60 kg: Queen Underwood, Seattle, Wash.
141 lbs/64 kg: Mikaela Mayer, Los Angeles, Calif.
152 lbs/69 kg: Raquel Miller, San Francisco, Calif.
165 lbs/75 kg: Claressa Shields, Flint, Mich.
178 lbs/81 kg: Franchon Crews, Baltimore, Md.
178+ lbs/81+ kg: Victoria Perez, Ventura, Calif.
Head Coach: Israel Acosta, Milwaukee, Wis.
Coach: Bruce Kawano, Pearl City, Hawaii
Coach: Gloria Peek, Norfolk, Va.
Team Manager: Joe Smith, Chattanooga, Tenn.
Physician: Dr. Ted Mills, Glen Cove, N.Y.
AIBA official: Patricia Pliner, Janesville, Wis.
USA Boxing, as the national governing body for Olympic-style
boxing, is the United States’ member organization of the
International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) and a member of
the United States Olympic Committee (USOC).