12-year-old boxer scheduled to compete at National Junior Olympics, hopes to bring gold back to Southeast Texas

Quinton Thomas Jr., 12, has competed in 18 matches. At age 10, he competed in his first match at Houston Junior Golden Gloves, taking home first place.

BEAUMONT, Texas — A 12-year-old boxer is putting Southeast Texas on the map and looking to make a name for himself at the National Junior Olympics. 

Marshall Middle School student Quinton Thomas Jr. is scheduled to compete in the USA Boxing National Junior Olympics in the 95 pounds weight division. 

MORE| Support Quinton’s Junior Olympics Dream

Last year, he placed 3rd at the Junior Olympics in his weight bracket, but he hopes to bring the gold back this year. 

Thomas says that he loves boxing and has been training hard all year long to have another shot at he Junior Olympics. 

“I seen I was getting good with it, I’m gonna [going to] stick with this and see how far I can get,” he said. “And I got pretty far.”

He fell in love with boxing long before getting in the ring. Thomas used to admire his dad as he shadow boxed around the house. At age nine, he decided to take boxing seriously and follow in his father’s footsteps. 

“My dad, he used to be a boxer, and he was just shadow boxing and like I got like right on side of him,” said Thomas Jr. “I started shadowboxing with him and he was like you want to be a boxer. And I was like yes, sir and he just signed me into boxing.”

His dad, Quinton Thomas Sr. became his boxing coach.

“You gonna [going to] come to the gym, you gonna run some more, you gonna get in the ring, shadow box, you gonna hit the heavy bag,” said boxing coach at 409 Elite Boxing Club Thomas Sr.

The following year at age 10, he competed in his first match at Houston Junior Golden Gloves and took home first place.

“Like all the lights was cut off and one light was shining in the ring, so all eyes on me,” said Thomas Jr. “And I knew I couldn’t lose, so I went out there and handled business.”

Last year, at only 11 years old and with only 10 matches under his belt, he competed in the Junior Olympics and brought home the bronze.

“I had to fight the number one kid on my second time fighting and that was a proud moment for me because I beat him,” said Thomas Jr. “And he was the number one kid, so I was just proud of that. And the next day I ended up losing to the kid who won it all, but I ended up getting bronze 3rd place.”

This year, he is determined to not settle for anything less than gold. 

“I’m going for that gold, first place,” said Thomas Jr. “It’s definitely hard work, I already have the mindset.”

Thomas Jr. only competed in 18 matches and is ranked number seven in the nation in the 85 pounds weight division. 

“It’s really amazing, just to see, you know, in the time span that he’s been boxing and how advanced that he’s fighting. It’s really a joy to watch,” said Thomas Sr.

He has been training hard at 409 Elite Boxing Club where he jumps rope, spends hours on the heavy bag, shadow boxes and gives his all to sparing. 

“I’m going in there trying to win this. Trying to bring this back, I’ve been putting in hard work, like really hard work,” said Thomas Jr. “And I feel like it’s gonna pay off when we go down there.”

Both, father and son say they’re happy to represent Beaumont on a national level.

“For him to go out there and compete against those guys, and come back home with bronze I felt was very, very rare, and different,” said Thomas Sr.

“It was a proud moment, but I know like I had to put on for my city,” said Thomas Jr.

This year, Thomas Jr. will be competing in the 95 pounds weight division and his first match is tomorrow.

Thomas wants to encourage other kids to follow their dreams, too. 

To help support Thomas Jr. for his National Junior Olympics trip to Wichita, visit the GoFundMe link here

This is a developing story. We will update with more if and when we receive more confirmed information.

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