Southeast DC

‘She's a little beast': Young girl from Southeast DC wins Boxing National Junior Olympics

Nine-year-old Westia Russell hopes to join the U.S. Olympic team one day

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A young girl from Southeast D.C. just returned from a big win at the Junior Olympics in Kansas in June.

Nine-year-old Westia Russell hopes to someday make the Olympic team in boxing.

“I get to beat people up without getting in trouble,” she said.

Winning was no trouble at all for Westia. She walked away with the medal in Kansas and now has bragging rights at the NoXcuse boxing gym in Prince George’s County, where she trains five nights a week.

“The weight class was 125 and she kept getting hit in the head, so the referee just stopped the fight,” Westia said.

Westia has been beating people up —in the ring — for quite some time. The boxer known as Princess Mama has been lacing up her gloves since she was in kindergarten and is heading into fifth grade in the fall.

Her mom, a former boxer herself, wasn’t surprised this was the sport she picked.


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“She told me that’s what she wanted to do,” she said. “She could’ve said she wanted to do anything: cheer, soccer, dance. She chose boxing.”

Her coach at NoXcuse, Lamont Roach Sr., said he knew there was something special about her right away

“She’s a little beast,” he said. “Man, I'm so proud of her. When she first walked in at like five or six-years-old, she had her mother’s spirit on her, and I knew she was going to be a fighter.”

Westia wasn’t the only kid from NoXcuse who won at the Junior Olympics . Fifteen-year-old Asaan Jenkins also won in his weight and age class.

“It felt great,” he said. “All my hard work paid off. It felt great.”

Both hope to make the Olympic team some day.

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