Girl power - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Girl power


Candice Vascocu always dreamed of fighting in the Olympic games.

"It's hard to get respect in the sport," said the assistant coach for Troup Boxing Gym.

There's been such little respect, women have never been allowed to box for their country.  Things are changing. The 2012 Summer Olympics will be the first to ever include women's boxing as a medal sport. Vascocu's Olympic dream could one day be reality for 11 year old Alyssa Elton.

"I like it," said Elton.  "And would like to go all the way through with it."

All of 90 pounds, Elton packs a mean punch.

"At first you can't really breath," said Elton of stepping in the ring.  "I'm like really nervous and then whenever you start punching it's not as hard as I thought it was."

Elton believes she's just as tough as the boys.

"Some parents aren't going to like it," said Vascocu.  "But little girls are pretty tough too."

Taking home battle cuts and a first place trophy, Elton carries the confidence of Muhammad Ali. She smiles when people say boxing is for boys.

"I think we could whoop them," says of the boys, including her brother.  "Anybody can do it. It's fun and girls do it because they show up the boys."

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