Note: This post has been corrected. See below for details.
LONDON -- Youth prevailed and Claressa Shields won the first boxing gold medal for the United States since 2004. She won one of the three inaugural Olympic women’s boxing divisions Thursday, beating a woman nearly twice her age, 33-year-old Russian Nadezda Torlopova, in the 75-kilogram division. The final score for the 17-year old boxer from Flint, Mich., was a decisive 19-12.
The last gold medal in boxing for the U.S. was Andre Ward’s.
Katie Taylor, the 19-year-old Irish woman who has stolen the show at women’s boxing, had a tough battle for her gold medal in the 60-kilogram weight class, but eked it out with smart boxing. She beat Russian lefty Sofya Ochigava, 10-8, with a decisive 4-1 second round.
She danced in the ring afterward and paraded with the Irish flag as the hugely partisan Irish crowd shook the entire arena.
In the first-ever women’s Olympic boxing final, Great Britain got a nice surprise in the 51-kilogram division with yet another gold medal. It came when second-seeded Nicola Adams clearly outfought China’s defending world champion, Cancan Ren. The final score was 16-7.
Adams called her victory “a dream come true,” and added, “I’m so overwhelmed with joy right now.”
Updated at 10:30: An earlier version of this post said this was the first medal for the U.S. since the Atlanta Olympics in 1996. It is the first medal since 2004.