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Fencing: Irish excel on day one of NCAAs

Laura Coletti | Friday, March 22, 2013


After three rounds of men’s individual and team competition on the first day of the NCAA Fencing championships in San Antonio, Notre Dame sits tied with Harvard for third place with 50 points, just one point behind second-place Princeton and 13 points behind Penn State, who is currently in first. 

Several Notre Dame fencers also placed well in their respective weapons. Junior Kevin Hassett and freshman John Hallsten are currently in seventh and 16th place, respectively, in the men’s saber. Senior foil Gerek Meinhardt had a flawless day of competition and is currently in first place, while fellow foil, junior Ariel DeSmet, sits at ninth place. Freshman Garrett McGrath and junior Michael Rossi are currently in 19th and 24th place, respectively, in the men’s epee. 

Hassett said he felt good about how his team performed yesterday and was happy for several of the team members who fenced particularly well.

“I feel like we had a good start [yesterday], but there were a couple of places where we could have done a little better,” he said. “Some of us were really on our game [yesterday], but others didn’t finish as well as we had hoped.”

The Irish men will continue to compete today. Hassett said he felt his squad has the potential to perform at an even higher level on the second day of competition.

“I feel like everyone on our team has the potential to fence at the highest level,” Hassett said. “It’s just a matter of having the right mindset and getting one’s job done.”

It is important for the team to keep a focused mindset moving forward, Hassett said. 

“We need to increase our intensity in a controlled manner so that we do not become hot-headed when things do not go our way,” he said. “At the end of the first day, we did a good job keeping a relatively optimistic attitude.”

The men will resume competition today at 9:00 a.m. at the Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio. 

Contact Laura Coletti at lcoletti@nd.edu