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Day 1 Recap: October 2022 North American Cup

10/07/2022, 8:30pm CDT
By Bryan Wendell

On the first day of #OctoNAC, gold medals were awarded in six events, including Division I Women’s Epee and Division I Men’s Foil.

Isis Washington (left) and Charlene (Kai) Liu in the Division I Women's Epee final. Photo by Serge Timacheff

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. — Exactly 78 days have passed since Isis Washington (Peter Westbrook Foundation/Top Fencing Club) and Team USA women’s epee squad ended the 2022 Fencing World Championships with an impressive fifth place finish.

After that busy but successful fencing season, Washington spent the remainder of her summer doing pretty much anything but fencing. 

“I took a long break after Worlds,” she says. “When I came back, I was like, ‘this isn’t going to work. How can I be ready?’ And my coach told me, ‘No, that's not true. You know how to do it. It’ll come back to you.’”

Washington says she started believing her coach “little by little.” And by the time she arrived in Minneapolis to compete at the October 2022 North American Cup, she discovered that some of that confidence had returned.

“I was talking to myself, just telling myself, like, ‘You're not in the best physical place that you could be in fencing wise, but you have all of the tools,’” Washington says. “So I just trust myself.”

That plan seemed to work as Washington took home the tournament’s first gold medal — earning the top prize in Division I Women’s Epee.

The gold medal is sure to help Washington build confidence as she looks toward the 2022-23 international season, which begins in earnest on Nov. 11 with a World Cup event in Tallinn, Estonia.

In other Division I action, the late rounds of the men’s foil event were stacked with four Olympians reaching the quarterfinals: Miles Chamley-Watson OLY (Fencers Club Inc.), Nick Itkin OLY (LA International Fencing), Alexander Massialas OLY (M Team), and Gerek Meinhardt OLY (M Team/Bluegrass Fencers' Club).

Two advanced from that quartet all the way to the finals, where Massialas and Meinhardt squared off for gold. In that bout, Meinhardt emerged with the 15-9 victory, beating his friend and longtime teammate.

“Yeah, it's always tough. Our bouts are always close,” Meinhardt says. “We know each other so well, so I’ve really got to dig deep. It's always a real battle.”

Like Washington, Meinhardt took some time off after Worlds to reset for the new season.

“We had a really nice little vacation after World Championships to let our bodies heal up, let our minds like get refreshed,” he says. “And we jumped back into it had a nice camp with some of our team members in the Olympic Training Center. It’s going to be a long season, so we've definitely been easing ourselves into it.”

Day 1 also saw action in parafencing, where Jillian Kosanovich (Denver Fencing Center) took home gold in women's epee and Tareq Alqallaf of Kuwait finished on top in men's epee.

In Y-14 competition, golds were won by Joy Zhaoyi Liu (Golubitsky Fencing Center) in women's foil and Jeffrey Tao (Spartak) in men's saber.

Day 1 Results

Division I Women’s Epee

Gold: Isis Washington (Peter Westbrook Foundation / Top Fencing Club)

Silver: Charlene (Kai) Liu (Shoreline Fencers Club / Medeo Fencing Club)

Bronze: Hadley N. Husisian (Fencers Club Inc. / DC Fencers Club)

Bronze: Vincenti Margherita A. Guzzi (Ataba Fencing Club)

5th: Kyle R. Fallon (Fencing Academy of Westchester)

6th: Christina Watrall (New York Fencing Academy / New York Athletic Club)

7th: Amanda L. Pirkowski (University of Notre Dame)

8th: Ketki Ketkar (Cornell University / Kaizen Academy LLC)


Division I Men’s Foil

Gold: Gerek Meinhardt (Massialas Foundation (M Team)/Bluegrass Fencers' Club)

Silver: Alexander Massialas (Massialas Foundation (M Team))

Bronze: Miles Chamley-Watson (Fencers Club Inc.)

Bronze: Samarth Kumbla (Silicon Valley Fencing Center)

5th (tie): Nick Itkin (LA International Fencing)

5th (tie): Marcello Olivares (University of Notre Dame/Bluegrass Fencers' Club)

7th: Kristjan Archer (Great Britain/OnTarget Fencing Club)

8th: Sidarth Kumbla (New York Athletic Club/Silicon Valley Fencing Center)


Parafencing Women’s Epee

Gold: Jillian Kosanovich (Denver Fencing Center)

Silver: Jataya Taylor (Denver Fencing Center)

Bronze: Julie Grant (Salle Auriol Seattle)

Bronze: Patricia (Mama T) A. Dykes


Parafencing Men’s Epee

Gold: Tareq Alqallaf (Kuwait/Zeljkovic Fencing Academy)

Silver: John (Scott) S. Rodgers (Denver Fencing Center)

Bronze: Nicholas Badeaux (Fencing Institute of Texas)

Bronze: Cory Moses (Fencers Club Inc.)

5th: James Downing (Denver Fencing Center)

6th: Terre Engdahl (Denver Fencing Center)

7th: Rick Swauger


Y-14 Women’s Foil

Gold: Joy Zhaoyi Liu (Golubitsky Fencing Center)

Silver: Kaitlyn N. Tan (Star Fencing Academy)

Bronze: Zoie Z. Wang (Star Fencing Academy / Bay Area Fencing Club)

Bronze: Caterina S. Fedeli (Epic Fencing Club / SCAD- Atlanta Fencing)

5th: Taisiia Doroshkevich (Fencing Center Of Chicago)

6th: Irene Y. Seo (Gutkovskiy Fencing Academy)

7th: Gabrielle Grace A. Gebala (Silicon Valley Fencing Center)

8th: Ada Yao (Canada)


Y-14 Men’s Saber

Gold: Jeffrey Tao (Spartak)

Silver: Jeein Joo (South Bay Fencing Academy)

Bronze: Emilio A. Gonzalez (Scarsdale Fencing Center / Fencers Club Inc.)

Bronze: Eric Kwalwasser (Stamford Fencing Center LLC)

5th: Yuchen (Kevin) Zhu (National)

6th: Christopher Guffey (Globus Fencing Academy)

7th: Jonathan Ng (Durkan Fencing Academy)

8th: Nicholas Mehan (Stamford Fencing Center LLC)

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