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Fencing: Local rival team poses challenge

Joe Wirth | Friday, January 28, 2011

The Irish will be in action against Cleveland State this weekend as a part of the Notre Dame Duals. The women will compete on Saturday, with the men slated to hit the strip on Sunday at the Joyce Center.

“It is very nice to host our local rivals who are maybe not travelling so much like other top teams,” Irish coach Janusz Bednarski said. “They will come here. They would like to win. They will be good partners for us.”

Both the men’s and women’s teams are ranked No. 1 in the nation, and Janusz said his teams acknowledge that they bring out their opponent’s best shot in every dual.  

The Irish are coming off of a successful weekend in the Big Apple following impressive performances at the NYU Invitational and the St. John’s Dual. Between the men’s and women’s teams, the Irish finished 21-1, further asserting their dominance as the teams to beat in collegiate fencing.

Sophomore James Kaull and senior Jacob Osborne look to continue their winning ways, as the duo combined for a 23-7 performance at NYU and a 16-4 showing at St. John’s.

The women’s team is led by two All-Americans in senior Ewa Nelip and junior Courtney Hurley. The two are also coming off a winning performance in New York, as the pair combined for a 27-4 performance at NYU and a 23-7 effort at St. John’s, leading the squad to an unblemished weekend.

The duals will take place all day Saturday and Sunday.