Squad to lean on younger fencers
Rebecca Rogalski | Thursday, January 30, 2014
The Irish hope to continue their success this weekend as they travel to Northwestern on Saturday for the Northwestern Duels, with teams such as Duke, Northwestern, Stanford and Princeton all in attendance. This will be one of the largest meets of the season for the Irish.
“Teams from various parts of the country will be partaking in this tournament, all who have highly-ranked fencing programs that will challenge us this weekend,” Irish coach Janusz Bednarski said.
The Irish performed well in last week’s NYU Invitational, winning almost every bout on both the men and women’s sides. The team hopes to continue that success by competing at a high level this weekend in Evanston. A major challenge for the Irish in this weekend’s Northwestern Duels will be the loss of the majority of the team’s leading fencers.
“Our best fencers were called to the stands for the United States to qualify for the World Championships, as well as the Olympic Games,” Bednarski said. “Without these individuals here this weekend, we will need to rely heavily on many of our younger, less-experienced fencers.”
Bednarski believes this will be a wonderful opportunity for the newer fencers to gain more experience and skill, as well as a great chance to prove their leadership.
“Junior Nicole Ameli will step up in place of sophomore Lee Kiefer and junior Madison Zeiss for the women’s side,” Bednarski said. “Various newcomers on the men’s side will also be ready to fence in place of senior Gerek Meinhardt and senior Ariel DeSmet.”
With such a young team competing this weekend, Bednarski hopes these fencers grow from the experience and give their best efforts possible.
“I cannot say that we will have easy matches against our opponents, but I feel confident that the fencers that we have will put in their all,” Bednarski said.
The Northwestern Duels will take place Saturday at the Henry Crown Sports Pavilion and Norris Aquatics Center (SPAC) in Evanston, Ill.
Contact Rebecca Rogalski at [email protected]