Trying to punch her ticket to Tokyo


Courtesy of Audrey Morris

Sophomore Audrey Morris is a boxer and competes at the national level.

Alyson Sudak, Staff Reporter

In high school sports, it’s not uncommon to come across an athlete who is training to make the varsity team, or earn a college scholarship, but sophomore Audrey Morris has a shot at the world stage in boxing as she sets her sights on gold.

“I feel like some people underestimate boxing, thinking it’s really easy,” Audrey said. “I workout everyday in the gym and I’m expected to run and workout on my own as well. I’m really dedicated to the sport and I’m aiming for that gold medal in 2020 Olympics.”

Not only does Audrey have her sights set high, her family is all in with helping her reach her goals too as her dad is one of her coaches.

“It’s hard to watch your daughter get hit when shes competing,” Audrey’s dad Ken said. “But she goes through two and a half hours a day of training a day to learn how to protect herself. She does a very good job in combat, so I have trust that she is prepared and ready. It was actually Audrey that got me motivated to go and get a certification for her boxing. Being a girl, sometimes she is the only one on the team that progresses into a national tournament, and for that reason it’s very important that I’m able to travel and work with her.”

Being a girl in a male dominated sport isn’t easy.

“I feel like people either like it or hate it that I’m a boxer, because it’s a masculine sport and all. But you don’t have to be manly to be a boxer,” Audrey said.

While Audrey isn’t swayed by other people’s opinions about the sport, training to reach such a high goal comes at a cost.

“It definitely interferes with school, but Audrey is already talking to teachers and preparing herself in study to make sure she is prepared to leave during finals week for a competition,” Ken said. “She has to start that process now, and it’s very difficult. She has a lot of travel ahead of her, but the summer is coming up. The biggest struggle she’s had is having her teachers understand that boxing is a 365 days a year sport, she always has to be ready to compete.”

The school’s off campus PE program has given Audrey time and opportunities she would not have had otherwise to reach her goals.

“She does an off campus PE class working two and a half hours a day up to six days a week,” Ken said. “We owe a lot to the off campus PE program for allowing her to get into work with a coach that has enough experience, and has coached professional boxers, and to just make this happen, but overall we are very proud of her, she works very very hard.”

Outside of school, Audrey also has to balance a social life and her dedication to boxing.

“Audrey would sleepover with us, but leave early in the morning to go workout or run and come back even before we woke up,” sophomore Jillian Duncan said. “It’s pretty impressive.”

Audrey didn’t always have the goal of a gold medal when she started boxing, but became determined as time went on.

“I started when I was thirteen, I was inspired by my cousin and I thought it would be a good way to get in shape,” Audrey said. “At first I didn’t even know I could compete, but then I started getting good and gave it a try. I’ve been with multiple gyms, still trying to find where I belong, but it’s a lot of work.”