Corpus Christi (KIII News) — A Corpus Christi teen is one step closer to his dream of boxing professionally.
Last month, 3News introduced you to 14-year-old Jesus "Jesse" Garza as he was getting ready to participate in the Texas Junior Olympics. Well, he won, and now he's preparing for nationals in Virginia next week.
Garza was training for the big event Thursday at the Hillcrest Boxing Club. He has his eyes set on the gold, and if he does take the medal home, he'll be the first male Corpus Christi boxer to do so in more than three decades.
"Everything that he does, the work that he puts in, is just incredible," trainer Luis Flores said.
At five-foot 10 and weighing in at 138 pounds, Garza is literally knocking out his competition. He first stepped into the ring at eight years old.
"I started doing more and more and I just knew that boxing was for me," Garza said.
He now has 16 fights under his belt and still gets a little nervous before each match. But once he's in the ring, it's game over.
"It all goes away. I just listen to what my coach tells me to do, because he knows what's open, and I just throw it and it lands," Garza said.
Flores is co-owner of Hillcrest Boxing Club, where Garza trains. It's a nonprofit gym that's open to keep area kids off the streets and out of trouble.
"They're like family," Garza said. "I couldnt have accomplished this without them."
Garza said he dreams of going pro.
"I see a champion. I do see a champion," Flores said.
Garza heads to the National Junior Olympics on June 24. To help him get there, Hillcrest Boxing Club is having a barbecue fundraiser on Saturday. It will be held from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at Hillcrest Boxing Club at 3510 Up River Road. A brisket plate will cost $7.
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