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Alexander Massialas Upsets World Medalists to Win Bronze at Seoul Foil World Cup

05/22/2011, 11:11am CDT
By Nicole Jomantas

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Seventeen-year-old Alexander Massialas (San Francisco, Calif.) won his first Senior World Cup medal outside of North American on Saturday when he earned the bronze at the Seoul Foil World Cup in Korea.

The win not only gave Massialas Olympic qualifying points, but made the two-time Junior World Team Champion the youngest athlete ever to medal at the event.

Massialas started the day strong with a 15-3 win over two-time NCAA Champion Nontapat Panchan (THA) in the table of 64.

In the next round, Massialas pulled out a close victory over two-time Junior World medalist Valerio Aspromonte (ITA), 15-14.

With two wins under his belt, Massialas was one of two U.S. fencers to qualify for the table of 16.

The #2-ranked fencer in the world, Chamley-Watson won his first two bouts against Dmitri Rigine (RUS), 15-10, and Lorenzo Nista (ITA), 15-14. Chamley-Watson finished 10th overall after a 15-11 loss to Laurence Halsted (GBR) in his bout to advance to the quarter-finals.

In Massialas’s first Senior World Cup table of 16 bout of the year, he faced four-time Senior World Champion Peter Joppich (GER) for the second time this season after defeating the fencing legend at the Venice World Cup in March. Massialas earned his second career victory over Joppich with a 15-11 win.

Massialas defeated another World medalist in the quarter-finals as he upset Liangliang Zhang (CHN), 15-9.

Alexander Massialas (right) scores a touch on Andrea Baldini (ITA).

In the semifinals, Massialas lost to three-time Senior World medalist Andrea Baldini (ITA), 15-6, to place third in the tournament while Baldini went on to win gold.

“Alexander fenced with great spirit today. Even though he was down in several key matches, he did not let things get to him. He stayed focused on the game plan and being ready to score the final touch in each match,” said his coach and father Greg Massialas (San Francisco, Calif.)

Four members of Team USA also qualified for the table of 64, but did not advance out of the opening round.

Gerek Meinhardt (San Francisco, Calif.) finished the day in 34th place after a 15-14 loss to Myeong-Jun Moon (KOR).

Kurt Getz (Rye, N.Y.) lost his opening bout to 2009 World medalist Artem Sedov (RUS), 15-9, to place 37th.

Race Imboden (Brooklyn, N.Y.) and his Junior World Teammate David Willette (Lafayette, Calif.) could have met in the table of 32, but both fencers lost their opening bouts. Imboden fell to 2009 Senior World silver medalist Jun Zhu (CHN), 15-12, and Willette lost to Giorgio Avola (ITA), 15-10. Imboden finished 48th and Willette placed 53rd.

Competition continues on Sunday when Team USA will vie for Olympic qualifying points in the team event.

Top-eight and U.S. results are as follows, including athletes who placed outside of the top 64 on Friday:

Seoul Individual Foil World Cup
1. Andrea Baldini (ITA)
2. Richard Kruse (GBR)
3. Alexander Massialas (San Francisco, Calif.)
3. Artem Sedov (RUS)
5. Byung-Chul Choi (KOR)
6. Liancai Huang (CHN)
7. Lianling Zhang (CHN)
8. Laurence Halsted (GBR)

Tag(s): News  Alexander Massialas