Claressa Shields is a lean, mean, history-making machine.

The 2012 London Olympics mark the first Games during which women's boxing was included as an event -- and on Thursday, 17-year-old Shields became the first American woman to take home gold, as well as the second-youngest fighter ever to snag top Olympic honors in either men's or women's boxing.

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The Flint, Mich.-born middleweight took on Nadezda Torlopova of Russia, and defeated her after four rounds, with a final score of 19-12. (Earlier Thursday, her teammate Marlen Esparza won the Bronze after a loss to China's Cancan Ren during the flyweight semifinals.)

Though her father, a former fighter himself, initially discouraged his daughter from giving boxing a shot (telling her it was a "man's sport"), Shields managed to convince him to let her begin training at age 11.

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"It's always dedicated to Flint, 'cause that's where I'm from," Shields told the Detroit Free Press of wanting to honor her downtrodden native city with the history-making win. And also, "I dedicate it to my coach [Jason Crutchfield, her mentor since age 11]. I feel like he deserves it: He's trained a lot of men at our gym, but none that wanted to dedicate themselves."

This article originally appeared on Claressa Shields, 17, Becomes First American Woman to Take Home Boxing Gold