Newmarket teacher has shot at Golden Gloves regional title
Ryan Clark, facing, of Barrington, spars with Doug Locker of Goffstown, during a practice session at Bare Knuckles Murphy's Academy in Manchester Monday. (/UNION LEADER)
"I've come in with a black eye here and there, and they're kids, so they ask questions, and you have to explain it to them after that," he said.
After school, the 25-year-old from Barrington slides his hands into a pair of boxing gloves.
And it seems all that hard work has paid off for the 152-pound amateur.
Clark will have a shot at a regional title when he competes Tuesday in the semifinal for the Golden Gloves New England Championships at Lowell (Mass.) Memorial Auditorium. He earned a spot in the championships after recently winning the Lowell district in the Golden Gloves competition.
"The work that he puts in at the gym is the same type of work that he puts in here. The guy works his tail off," Andriski said. "We're just really proud of him and supportive."
He has undergraduate degrees in sociology and justice studies, and a master's degree in criminal justice. While he's considered a law-enforcement career, Clark has enjoyed working with the students and may stay in education.
When he's not at school or fighting, Clark often volunteers his time to help improve the lives of local youth. His efforts include helping with Special Olympics and being a big brother through the Big Brother/Big Sister program for the past five years.
He would like to box professional someday, but he said his day job comes first.
"This is my life after work. I'm not in it for the money," he said of his boxing. "I just enjoy it, and if I can somehow use this to help kids out along the way, then that would be great."
Clark's amateur career began to take off after he hooked up with Billy Rollins, a retired professional boxer from Barrington who expressed interest in training Clark after seeing him fight.
Clark is now coached by Linda Murphy at Bare Knuckle Murphy's.
She described him as a genuinely nice guy, but one who's really tough when he needs to be.
"I think I enjoy watching him because I know how passionate he is about it," said Hale, a nursing student who helped treat one of Clark's recent black eyes.
"He's the most gentle person you'll ever meet," she said.