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Fencing: Team finds success at national tourney

Mike Monaco | Monday, November 14, 2011

The defending champion fencing squad traveled to Austin, Texas this weekend for the United States Fencing Association’s North American Cup, their first national tournament as a squad this season. Twenty freshman and sophomores made the trip for the Irish.

“It was the first national tournament of the year for us, and it was definitely nice to get back into it,” freshman epeeist Dale Purdy said.

Purdy finished 13th out of 219 in his division, and highlighted a group of underclassmen that was successful in Texas.

“I was pretty happy with [my performance],” Purdy said. “That gets me points for the national team and that’s my goal in addition to [qualifying] for the NCAA Championships.”

Other newcomers had impressive performances, including freshman Race Imboden, who won the men’s foil, and freshman Lee Kiefer, who also placed first in the women’s foil.

Additional strong performances included freshman Ashley Severson’s third place finish in the women’s epee and sophomore Adriana Camacho’s 15th place finish in the women’s foil.

The Irish will travel to University Park, Pennsylvania for Penn State’s Garret Open on Saturday. The event has no bearing on NCAA Championship qualification, but the event is more than just a trial run for the squad.

“It’s kind of a warm-up [for the rest of the season], but it’s actually one of the more intense tournaments we have,” Purdy said. “It’s good preparation for the other events.”

The defending champs will be back in action Saturday at 8 a.m. and continuing into Sunday at Penn State.