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Michael Costin Earns Second Gold on Final Day of the NAC

11/15/2011, 4:11am CST
By No Author

(Austin, Texas) – Sixteen-year-old Michael Costin (Culver City, Calif.) finished his competition at the North American Cup on Monday with a rare feat in men’s fencing – winning gold medals in both the junior and cadet men’s saber at the same tournament.

Following his gold medal win in the cadet (U17) event on Saturday, Costin entered the junior event as the #13 seed, but an undefeated performance in the pools earned him a #6 seed in the table of 256.

After five straight wins, Costin advanced to the semifinals against John Hallsten (Sacramento, Calif.) Although Costin held a 12-10 lead, Hallsten came back to tie the bout first at 13 and then again at 14 before Costin ended the bout with a 15-14 win.

In the finals, however, Costin controlled the bout against Andrew Herczak (Randolph, N.J.) and earned the win, 15-11.

“I came here with the goal in mind of winning both and it feels really good,” Costin said. “It’s hard fencing both, but the adrenalin’s still running from the first day, so that helps.”

In the cadet women’s epee, 16-year-old Audrey Abend (New York City, N.Y.) also has ascended the ranks in both the U17 and U20 age divisions as the reigning Junior Olympic Champion in both events.

Abend went undefeated in the pools and won five bouts to qualify for the gold medal finals against Victoria Wines (Mahopac, N.Y.) who won gold at the Moedling Cadet European Cup in Hungary two weeks ago.

Abend, a 2011 Junior and Cadet World Team member, won a decisive bout against Wines, 15-4, to earn her third NAC title of the season after winning both cadet and junior gold at the July NAC in Reno.

“I think my confidence grew towards the end and I felt like I finished strong which is what I like to do. I don’t like to be up against a wall,” Abend said. “I was nervous in the first two bouts, but kind of after I hit the ‘runner’s wall,’ my confidence came back again.

Abend will begin the Junior World Cup Circuit in Bratislava this weekend as her first international tournament of the season.

“I have to pick and choose which tournaments I go to internationally because there’s so many, so I don’t do the cadet events, but the goal is to do really well at the Junior World Cups and hopefully make some senior finals this season,” she said.

Thirteen-year-old Morgan Partridge (Swansea, Mass.) won her second straight gold medal in the Y14 foil event after winning the Nationals in Reno.

Partridge, who also earned NAC Y12 gold medals in July and August, went undefeated in the pools and then won four bouts to advance to the finals where she earned a quick win over Joanne Carminucci (Brewster, N.Y.), 15-3.

In the cadet men’s epee event, Conor Shepard (Colleyville, Texas) fenced a close gold medal bout against Marc Antoine Blais-Belanger (CAN), but the Canadian earned the win, 15-14.

Click here to view full results. Top eight results are as follows:

Junior Men’s Saber
1. Michael Costin (Culver City, Calif.)
2. Andrew Herczak (Randolph, N.J.)
3. Kaito Streets (Redwood City, Calif.)
3. John Hallsten (Sacramento, Calif.)
5. Jonah Shainberg (Rye, N.Y.)
6. Kieran Steer (CAN)
7. Miguel Breault-Mallette (CAN)
8. Duncan O’Brien (Wellesley Hills, Mass.)

Cadet Women’s Epee
1. Audrey Abend (New York City, N.Y.)
2. Victoria Wines (Mahopac, N.Y.)
3. Eva Niklinska (Granger, Ind.)
3. Renee Bichette (Winter Park, Fla.)
5. Mandeep Bhinder (Newburgh, N.Y.)
6. Amanda Sirico (Bowie, Md.)
6. Kasia Nixon (Los Angeles, Calif.)
8. May Peterson (Santa Monica, Calif.)

Cadet Men’s Epee
1. Marc-Antoine Blais-Belanger (CAN)
2. Conor Shepard (Colleyville, Texas)
3. Inaki De Guzman (Fairfax, Va.)
3. Michael Billinghurst III (Lagrange, Ohio)
5. Justin Yoo (Los Angeles, Calif.)
6. Samuel Koch (San Francisco, Calif.)
7. John Cramerus (Sugar Land, Texas)
8. Jake Raynis (Chatsworth, Calif.)

Y14 Women’s Foil
1. Morgan Partridge (Swansea, Mass.)
2. Joanne Carminucci (Brewster, N.Y.)
3. Nicole Vaiani (Belmar, N.J.)
3. Isabella Chung (National Division)
5. Stefani Deschner (Mechanicsville, Va.)
6. Quinn Crum (Providence, R.I.)
7. Iman Blow (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
8. Isabel Wei (Palo Alto, Calif.)

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