Girl boxers knock out the competition at the Spartan Boxing Club

NEW ORLEANS -- Who says that girls can't pack a mean punch?

In the 7th Ward, there's a club called the "Spartan Boxing Club," and it's run by experienced coaches from the boxing world.

One of the trainers is even noted to have worked with pros like Evander Holyfield.

In the mist of the male dominated club are two females who are training to knock out the competition.

Sydni Johnson is one of them.

She's only 10 year's old and she's been a part of the boxing club for 2 years.

"When they really hear like of girl boxing they are so surprised like, ' box?' I'm like yeah.' They see me as still a little girl but I'm tougher than most of the boys in here," says Johnson.

"To see them with their head gear on, you wouldn't know if it's a girl or a boy," says one of the trainers, Dwayne Clipps.

Clipps explains that this club is meant for youth who might be struggling with school or at home.

He says the program was put into place back in 2015 to teach discipline, respect, and how to achieve their goals.

The Spartans meet 4 times a week and train 3 hours each day at Milne Nord Recreation Center.

The hard work seems to be paying off according to 18-year old Dominique Hagans.

"It's a championship belt here," says Hagans as she shows off her a large gold plated belt she won at a competition in 2018.

"It takes a lot of confidence to get in the ring with a bunch of boys who are bigger than you and stronger than you," says Hagans.

"Some of the guys, when they get in the ring, they're like oh that's a girl. I don't want to fight a girl. They get in the ring and after a minute they're like, ugh, I don't want to fight these girls," jokes coach Clipps.

The boxing gloves may be pink, but the competition is fierce.

"You know we live in a patriarchal sort of society, so when a girl can be on the same level as a guy, I think it means a lot," says Hagans.

The girls are heading to Atalanta in February for the first amateur match of the season.

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