ST. CLOUD -- Two boxers from the St. Cloud area set off tomorrow for the USA Boxing National Championship with an opportunity to qualify for the Olympics.

Twenty-seven-year-old Kim Putzier of St. Cloud and 22-year-old Joe James of Eden Valley both won in the regional tournament earlier this month and will go on to the national tournament held in Spokane, Wash. this weekend.

Putzier and James box out of Golden Gloves Boxing in St. Cloud, ran by Cindy Schumacher.

Schmacher says if Putzier or James win in the week-long national tournament, they will have an opportunity to qualify for the 2016 Summer Olympics.

Putzier will have to beat out 18 other boxers from around the country in the lightweight division and James will have to beat out 34 in the light welterweight division.

Schumacher says Putzier, who turns 28 on Saturday, is fairly new to the sport but has improved immensely to become one of the best boxers in the state.

James is also somewhat new to boxing, but Schumacher says he has worked hard to hone his skills and achieve success.

Schumacher says she is extremely proud of Putzier, James, the coaching staff and the team in St. Cloud as a whole.

Schumacher says she is proud of what the Golden Gloves Boxing club has become and encourages aspiring boxers of almost any age to give it a shot.

"[Golden Gloves] has become exactly what I wanted it to be," Schmacher says. "Our team has never been as successful as it is right now."

L to R: Kim Putzier, Coach Jon LaPlant, Joe James. Photo: Cindy Schumacher.