Former boxing champion eyes another title - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Former boxing champion eyes another title

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Former boxing national champion Sadie Roberts, from Hudson, is putting up one last fight. Roberts, 28-year-old, is going after the title of two-time national champion. 

Roberts started boxing at the age of 16. Her second home quickly became the Cedar Valley Boxing Club in Waterloo.  

"My coach in Wisconsin always said it's like fighting your own demons in between the ropes," said Roberts. "And I loved her analogy, because I think that's why when I'm in there, I don't give up. Because we all have something that eats at us, and that's my way of fighting it."'

The hours in the gym paid off for Roberts, when she took home the National championship title in 2007.

 "Everybody always calls me your a little girl with a heart of a lion," said Roberts.  "I've never been afraid. I just think if you have a heart like that you can do whatever you want."

Fighting to fight. The small town Iowa girl didn't have it easy. She was raised by a single mother of five. 

"Sometimes my mom would have trouble making ends meat," said Roberts. "So there was a couple of time where I'd have to pay a bill here or there. But, I would never take it back, because it made me who I am."

Roberts was determined, one way or another, to make it to the gym. She would bike after school from Hudson to the Cedar Bend Humane Society where she worked, and then bike to the gym.

"That's 28 miles everyday, and along the way I would stop at whatever gas station or car wash and I would dig through the dumpsters and stick the cans in my gym bag," said Roberts. "And I would wait till the end of the month and cash them in and I would have $100."

The gym, nestled on the East Side of Waterloo, was where she learned she had to work for what she wanted. Roberts credits her coach at the club, Greg Boyer, who took her in, both being a coach and a second dad. 

"He's always been a great teacher in the ring, and outside the ring," said Roberts. From teaching me how to fish, to playing pool, to driving a stick on a car. This is like my family."

Day in and day out she kept fighting, with the support of the gym.

"I won the nationals, and made the Pan-American games," said Roberts. "I had a shoulder injury so I wasn't able to go. That really hurt me, but I was like next year's mine."

Next year, wasn't. 

"In 2009, I broke my hand in the first round, but I kept going because I wanted it," said Roberts.

Roberts coming back to the ring again the next year. 

"In 2010, I lost to the champion."

She's been fighting with injuries over the past couple of years. Now, ten years later, she's back at it, with one last attempt before she hangs up her gloves for good. 

"I've been knocked down seven times so now I'm standing up eight and I think this is my year to prove to myself that I can stick with the best in the country and if not, win it all."

Roberts is raising money to pay for her flight ticket to multiple tournaments so she can make it to nationals this summer. 

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