Francisco Alemán, María Flores and her older brother, Jesús Flores, recently made their junior amateur boxing biographies a bit stronger.
Alemán and the Flores siblings – along with Jett Blackwell – each won U.S. National Junior Golden Gloves championships in a weeklong tournament that ended July 22 in Mesquite, Nevada.
Alemán Boxing Club sent seven juniors to the nationals. Other medalists were 8-year--old Luke Thongthipvoravong (second, 65-pound division); Carlos Pérez (third, 145 pounds, 15-16 age group); and, Osmel Ávila (third, 154 pounds, 15-16 age group).
Blackwell, a Team USA athlete, is the top-ranked junior in the super heavyweight division (176-plus pounds) in the 15-16 age group.
Ranked in the top five by USA Boxing the last three years, Jesús Flores, 14, won all three of his bouts.
An incoming freshman at Caruthers High School, Jesús has been a top-ranked junior the last three years in the 85-, 95- and 101-pound weight classes.
He’s looking forward to December, when he’ll compete for a world junior title in Salt Lake City.
“When I go into a fight, I adjust to whoever is in front of me,” said Jesús, who has more than 100 junior amateur victories and under 20 losses since beginning competitive boxing at age 10.
“Every bout I fight like it’s my last. We got our own gym that our dad built at our house, so I train as hard as I can.”
Jesús began working out for the sport at age eight. By the time he turns 21, He would like a shot at the Olympic Trials.
Alemán, 10, is the son of lead coach Frank Alemán, who owns and operates the gym. While his father has operated the gym for nine years, Francisco only started competitive boxing two years ago. He has three wins and one loss.
María Flores has been training in the sport since age five. She earned the title belt in the 9-10 age bracket in the 70-pound division in Mesquite. María has eight victories and a single loss.
“This was an open invitation to all fighters in the United States,” said Frank Alemán, who owns and operates Alemán Boxing Club, which will celebrate its 10th anniversary in 2018.
“Blackwell is the first heavyweight out of Fresno to be ranked No. 1.”
They train at least twice a week at Frank Alemán’s gym in Fresno. The gym is located at 1229 N. Sierra Vista.