Boxing

Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

A 27-year-old pipe fitter from the Northwest has earned a spot on the USA's first-ever women's Olympic boxing team. Queen Underwood of Seattle is considered to be one of the top contenders for the gold in boxing – male or female – at the 2012 London Games.

Underwood emerged as the lightweight champion at the week-long Olympic trials for women's boxing. The contest was in Spokane – where the audience welcomed Underwood as a home-state favorite.

SPOKANE, Wash. - You might remember the film "Million Dollar Baby." Hillary Swank plays a female boxer named Maggie. Clint Eastwood plays her crusty – and at first, reluctant — trainer.

Maggie: "I thought you might want to train me."

Frankie: "I don't train girls."

Maggie: "Maybe you should. People who see me fight think I'm tough."

Frankie: "Girlie, tough ain't enough."

This year, women will box for the gold for the first time ever at the Summer Olympics in London. One of the top contenders is a boxer from the Northwest named Queen Underwood.

Jessica Robinson / Northwest News Network

"To challenge yourself, you have to fight someone who actually knows how to fight.”

Up until the last few decades it was considered indecent for women to box. This year, women’s boxing will make its Olympic debut in the Summer Games of London.

The contenders for the first-ever U.S. Olympic women's boxing team face off in Spokane. It's a big development on the international stage. But the face of boxing has already been changing in small clubs across the Northwest.

Enter the Madrigal sisters.