Fencing: ND takes second at NCAA championships
Observer Staff Report | Monday, March 25, 2013
Notre Dame placed second overall at the NCAA Championships in San Antonio, Texas, behind Princeton. The Irish fell seven match wins short of the Tigers for first overall, but as a whole had a set of strong performances that put them directly ahead of Penn State, who placed third, and the 22 other teams in the tournament.
The tournament combined both the men’s and women’s scores, and both groups performed well in San Antonio. One of the highlights of the day for the Irish was the women’s foil, where Notre Dame gained the most points out of any team towards its team score. In the women’s foil the Irish accumulated 40 compared next to the next best point total of 28 accrued by Columbia.
Irish freshman foil Lee Kiefer placed first overall and sophomore foil Madison Zeiss placed third. Additionally, in the women’s epee event senior Courtney Hurley returned to her hometown of San Antonio and won the weapon championship. In the men’s foil, senior Gerek Meinhardt had a strong performance and placed third, losing to Stanford’s eventual champion, freshman Alex Massialas.
Despite the disappointment of not winning the NCAA national championship like the team set out to do at the beginning of the season, the meet and season showcased a strong Irish team. The Irish placed at least one fencer, and often two or three, within the top ten at the NCAA Championships. While the NCAA national tournament was the last meet of the year for the Irish fencing team, Notre Dame will return in the fall and aim to improve one spot and reach the top of the podium. With a large crop of young talent and national champions in their respective weapons, Notre Dame’s future looks promising.