Up North: Duluth’s Mackenzie Moe looking to knock out competition in National Silver Gloves
The Golden Glove National’s are one of the biggest events for adult amateur fighters in the United States. The National Silver Gloves Tournament carries the same weight, but for youth fighters, and the Northland will have some representation this year.
“I’ve always considered Duluth a fighting town, a boxing town,” said Zach Walter, owner of Jungle Boy Boxing Gym in Duluth. “The rich boxing history goes way back, and now Mackenzie, she’s putting her name in the history books.”
16-year-old Mackenzie Moe grew up playing basketball.
“She came in, she loved basketball, and she seemed kind of reluctant to take after boxing,” said Walter. “Really quickly, she found that natural knack for it. It’s so cool to be a part of her career.”
The switch to boxing from basketball has proven to be an excellent decision, as Moe has shot up the ranks of fighters, claiming a spot at the National Silver Gloves Tournament.
The switch from a team sports to an individual one takes a lot of mental solitude, but Moe was up for the challenge.
“There’s a lot of work that goes into boxing, a lot of technical stuff, not just throwing a basketball, you know. It was a lot from going to a team sport to being your own single person and having to do it pretty much with yourself,” said Moe.
Luckily for Moe, she has the luxury of an excellent coach in Alissa Boltz.
Boltz’s experience as a fighter has strengthened Moe in the sport, and Boltz is starting to see that in their training.
“Mackenzie has been one of my sparring partners,” said Boltz. “I’m just kind of teaching her the ropes, and now she’s getting in there and hitting me with, like, hard shots. She’s got good power. She’s given me a black eye before, so now she’s kind of giving me some work, which I need.”
Moe, at just 16 and new to the sport, has proven to excel, fighting twice this past weekend to go to nationals.
It won’t be easy, as Moe has no idea what her opponents are like until she gets there, but you bet she’ll be ready when the time comes.
“It’s just really fast paced stuff,” said Moe. “So I’m trying to get my stamina and cardio up as much as I can, and just work as hard as I can.”
The National Silver Gloves Tournament runs from February 1-3 in Independence, Missouri.