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LAM Jun 12
LOS ANGELES -- Mikaela Mayer knew she was better than the high school burnout that she was in danger of becoming. Custom John Havlicek Jersey .She had attended four schools in three years, repeatedly getting in trouble for fighting and bad grades. She was a 17-year-old occasional model with the self-awareness to realize she had no clear direction or future outside the San Fernando Valley.All I cared about was my friends, and going out and partying, and being a young, cool teenager, Mayer said. I was looking for something, but I had no idea what.One summer day, she realized something was calling her to the humble storefront kickboxing gym in an unassuming strip mall down the street from her divorced dads apartment. Instead of driving past it again, Mayer and a friend went inside.The first thing she asked the trainer was: Do you think Im too old to start competing?I was hungry for success in something at that time, because I wasnt doing well at anything, Mayer said. I was like, `I want to be good at something. Its always been inside me. Ive always had that fire. I didnt have anywhere to direct it.Almost nine years to the day after that wild child learned how to throw her first punch, Mayer will fight at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics, joining gold medalist Claressa Shields as the only U.S. women boxers in Brazil.Mayer still doesnt know exactly why she first decided to punch people after a youth spent participating in everything from soccer to motocross to snowboarding. Nobody in her self-described family of hippies had been anywhere near a boxing gym.After her first workout, she knew three different ways to throw a proper punch. And she liked it.I poured all my energy into it, Mayer said. It wasnt ever just a part-time thing for me. From the day I walked into this gym, within two months, all I thought was, `I want to be the best female fighter in the world.Mayer took lessons in muay thai and kickboxing, but she dedicated herself to boxing after a back injury temporarily stopped her from throwing kicks. She became a Golden Gloves champion just a few years later -- and when the Olympics added a womens tournament in 2010, Mayer and her father, Mark, decided to chase medals.They heard about a boxing scholarship program at Northern Michigan University under revered amateur coach Al Mitchell, who has taught three U.S. Olympic teams. Before she had time to think, the LA native had been accepted to the program on Michigans Upper Peninsula.So I quit my job, said, `Later, to my boyfriend at the time, and hopped on a plane, Mayer said. I had never been to Michigan, let alone the U.P., which is a `nother thing on its own. I remember flying in there and seeing all the pine trees and 10 feet of snow and just thinking, `Where the hell am I?Mayer warmed to her cold new home, and Mitchell developed his first female pupil into a world-class fighter. Her bond with Mitchell and his fiancee became so tight that she had Mitchells initials tattooed on her right hand.The thing that makes Mikaela different is her commitment, Mitchell said. When she walked in here, I broke her down and rebuilt her. She never believed it was too hard, and she never gave up. She has toughness that got her this far, and now its getting her all the way to the Olympics. Its an incredible thing to do in that amount of time.A year after moving to Northern Michigan, Mayer fell just short of a spot on the first U.S. womens team, losing a decision to Queen Underwood at the 2012 trials. She only became more determined to catch the next wave in the evolution of her sport.Mayer made the Rio team last fall only after fending off a ferocious challenge over three qualifying fights from teenage prodigy Jajaira Gonzalez, a fellow LA-area native with a wealth of junior titles.The competition is so much tougher now than it was when I started, Mayer said. Back in 2009, if you went to a tournament and even got to have two fights, it was worth the money.With an artfully bent nose from boxing, she still takes occasional modeling work, particularly for a handbag company that sponsors her. Although she still lives in Michigan, Mayer returned to her original Valley gym last month, joyfully greeting her first coach -- and Coconut, the adorable dog she gave up when she moved.She wants an Olympic medal out of her journey, but she also wants her success to bring more attention to womens boxing. Although she has thought about turning pro, good money is scarce for female fighters outside the octagon -- but that only makes Mayer more determined to succeed in Rio.Ive always believed Id be here, but I also knew that the chances of being here were going to be slim, Mayer said. This was my dream before I knew it was possible. Custom Kevin Mchale Jersey . The Canadian squad, skipped by Jennifer Jones of Winnipeg, got on the board first with two in the second end, and followed that with two more apiece in the fourth and sixth ends. Bob Cousy Jersey Large . "I was fortunate to play many years at this level with a great organization and unbelievable teammates," said Hejduk in a statement. http:///...rsey-large-197e.html . He said Tuesday thats a big reason why he is now the new coach of the Tennessee Titans. Whisenhunt said he hit it off quickly with Ruston Webster when interviewing for the job Friday night. Matt Henrys maintains his line Matt Henrys pitch map shows that he bowled a fifth-sixth stump line throughout and the beehive also suggests that majority of balls finished on the same line too. To constantly bowl a probing line outside off is likely to bring success. The reason for Henrys consistency was his positioning on the crease close to the stumps and a strong, stable wrist.Saha fights with patience The sight of batsmen battling tough sessions is becoming increasingly rare and therefore it was heartening to see the way Wriddhiman Saha fought through the tough phases on the first day and second morning. Saha is predominantly a front-foot player and scored only three times off balls that pitched shorter than the six-metre mark, which exemplified his patience more.Bhuvneshwars strong wrist The first two balls that Bhuvneshwar Kumar bowled showed the value of a strong wrist behind the ball for a swing bowler. The first ball came out of his hand with the seam tilted towards the first slip, and the second had the seam tilted towards fine-leg. To use these two variations in the first two balls of his first spell, on his return after missing the Kanpur Test, showed immense control and confidence.21.2 and 23.1 - The threat of low bounce R Ashwin bowls a nicely flighted delivery pitched on a good-length spot that brings Luke Ronchi forward to offer a defensive shot. The ball takes a little piece off the pitch enroute, and finds the inside edge before thudding into Ronchis body. Larry Bird Jersey Large. It could be the footmarks created by New Zealands left-arm seamers or possibly the first sign of the corners of the cracks disintegrating.A few deliveries later, the ball pitches at an almost identical spot but this time it goes through the pitch. The lack of bounce deceives not only the batsman but also the keeper. It is almost impossible to negotiate a ball that does not bounce even a few inches. Considering that it is only the second session of the second day, batting is likely to get tougher in the days to follow.Bhuvneshwar tweaks his length The best part about Bhuvneshwars five-wicket haul was the way he adjusted his length. His natural length is to pitch the ball a lot fuller to induce edges or leg-before dismissals but on this Eden pitch, he needed to pull it back a yard. Whenever there is some uneven bounce in the pitch, one must bowl at a length that allows the ball to misbehave after pitching, which is a little bit on the shorter side. On dusty Indian pitches one must vary the length regularly but, on this pitch, Bhuvneshwar needed to be at the same spot ball after ball. His accuracy is his biggest strength and on this surface its significance was magnified. ' ' ' 

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