Local boxing sensation gears up for ESPN`s Friday Night Fights - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

Local boxing sensation gears up for ESPN`s Friday Night Fights

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

The biggest name in boxing will be in Chicago Friday night! Former heavyweight champ Mike Tyson is co-promoting a big night of title bouts at UIC.

But Tyson isn't the only one getting major attention leading up to the main event. Oak Park native Kristin Gearhart is getting ready for a big night in the ring!

Gearhart is the youngest of four girls. Anyone with siblings knows growing up can be a battle.

"I have three older sisters and they're not just a few years older, they're like 6, 7 and 8 years older," Kristin told Good Day Chicago. "I'm like the baby of the baby!"

It's probably no surprise that before Gearhart could even drive a car, she wanted to learn to fight.

"It was a defense mechanism, basically," Gearhart joked.

That "defensive mechanism" became a passion. For more than 10 years, this Chicago girl has been lacing up her gloves and getting in the ring. She boxed between classes at the University of Illinois at Chicago. After graduation, she didn't let up. Gearhart trains six days a week and tends bar at Public House.

"It's kind of the running joke in the bar," Gearhart explained. "If someone gets out of control they wouldn't call the 6'5" ex-Marine - they would probably call me first."

This 25-year-old is a six-time Chicago Golden Glove champion. Out of 42 amateur fights, Gearhart only lost six. She has two professional wins under her belt, in just as many professional fights.

Gearhart will light up the Chicago boxing scene this Friday. She's on the card for ESPN's Friday Night Fights at the UIC Pavilion.

"I'm just ready to go," Gearhart told FOX 32 News. "I'm ready to put on a show."

Good Day Chicago's Melody Mendez wanted to see if she could learn a few things from Gearhart before fight night. While her efforts were commendable, she might need a little more time before going it alone in the ring.

Mendez asked Gearhart if anything scares this woman who willingly walks into a fight. Gearhart copped to fears of spiders and needles. But not much else! Gearhart is funny, beautiful and well-spoken - not what you'd expect when you think of a prize fighter.

"I get that a lot. They're probably right, who knows," Gearhart. "But you have to be kind of nuts to get into a ring and go head to head with somebody for so long."

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