The men and women’s fencing teams trounced Sacred Heart and Drew on Saturday as students packed the balcony of the fencing loft in Payne Whitney Gym to watch their classmates roll to victory.
The men beat both Sacred Heart and Drew 15-12 in their first (and last) home tournament of the season. It was the team’s last match of non-Ivy competition before the first of a two-part Ivy Championship that begins next weekend.
“With the fans and fencers in the fencing room, the energy, excitement and cheering was really intense and helped us to pull out our final victories against Drew,” Andrew Holbrook ’10 said.
The foil squad had a productive day as it led the Elis to their well-fought victory against Sacred Heart. John Gurrieri ’10, Nathaniel Botwinick ’11 and Shiv Kachru ’12 all had flawless rounds. Foil competition heightened against Drew, however, as the squad earned a 5-4 victory. Kachru went 3-0, and Holbrook won his sole bout in the round.
The saber squad struggled to 5-4 victories against both schools. Adam Fields ’12 went 2-0 against Sacred Heart as Jonathan Holbrook ’12 and Sebastian Cano-Besquet ’09 went 1-2. Against Drew, none of the Elis fenced flawless rounds, but Holbrook went 2-1, the Bulldogs’ best record.
The epeeists’ scores were like a palindrome: They won 6-3 against Drew but lost 3-6 to Sacred Heart. Captain Michael Pearce ’09 had a strong 3-0 showing against Drew, putting him at 5-1 for the day. Against Sacred Heart, Pearce held the only winning record.
The women beat Sacred Heart and Drew 19-8 and 22-5, respectively, marking an improvement over last year’s 17-10 win over Sacred Heart (it was the team’s first time playing Drew).
“Overall, we fenced very well and the results reflect that,” Captain Lidia Gocheva ’09 said.
The foilists swept Drew 9-0. Lidia Gocheva ’10, Katherine Pitt ’12, Valeria Makeeva ’12, Jillian Liu ’12 and Samantha Attwood ’12 aced all their bouts. Against Sacred Heart, the foil squad went 8-1, giving them an impressive 17-1 record for the day.
The epeeists had mixed results for the day, beating Drew 6-3 but falling to Sacred Heart 4-5. Kristin Saetveit ’10 (1-0) and Rebecca Moss ’10 (3-0) won all of their matches.
“I had lost both of my first two bouts by a single touch and had made several careless mistakes, so I was feeling pretty frustrated,” Abigail Fraeman ’09 said of her final epee bout against Sacred Heart. “I really wanted that last chance for victory, so I calmed myself down and listened closely to my coach’s advice. I was really focused, and ended up winning by a solid margin of 5-2.”
The sabre squad won both bouts. Katherine Arden ’10, Jennifer Ivers ’10 and Farrah Kimovec ’10 went 6-3 against Sacred Heart and 7-2 against Drew. Ivers won all six of her bouts in a very successful day of fencing.
“These were the last meets before the Ivy League Championships, which is why it was so important for us to fence well,” Gocheva said. “After such convincing victories against Sacred Heart and Drew, we are very excited about Ivies.”
On Sunday, both teams head to New York for the Ivy South competition hosted by Columbia. The second half of the Ivy championship will take place Feb. 22 at Brown in Providence, R.I.