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January NAC Day 2 Results

01/20/2013, 9:00am CST
By Nicole Jomantas

Catherine Lee (right) fights for her final touch against Audrey Yun in the junior women's epee gold medal final. Photo credit: Nicole Jomantas

Junior women's epee podium.

(Louisville, Ky.) – The January North American Cup proved to be both a homecoming and a coming out party of sorts for 19-year-old Catherine Lee (Elizabethtown, Ky.) on Saturday.

Lee, a freshman who is both fencing for Notre Dame and attending the school on an Air Force ROTC scholarship, was ranked just 28th in the junior national team rankings at the start of the day and a 29th place finish in the pools meant that her second bout of the day would be against 2012 Junior World Team medalist Audrey Abend (New York City, N.Y.) in the table of 64.

“I’ve never fenced her before. She’s very strong and I had to attack her a lot which I don’t usually do, but today it was working out better for me,” Lee said of her 15-12 victory over Abend.

There would be little time for celebration, however, as Lee’s next opponent was Nina Van Loon (Boulder, Colo.) – a Harvard sophomore who is ranked fourth in the nation.

Lee kept calm, however, and took the victory, 15-14.

In the table of 16, Lee defeated 16-year-old Katie Angen (Los Angeles, Calif.), 15-10, to advance to the quarter-finals where she earned a 15-7 victory over 2012 Cadet World medalist Jessie Radanovich (Tollhouse, Calif.)

After a 15-8 victory over 16-year-old Mason Speta (Chicago, Ill.) in her first NAC semifinal bout since winning bronze at this tournament in 2012, Lee met 17-year-old Audrey Yun (Los Angeles, Calif.) in the gold medal final.

Although she would be fencing in her first NAC gold medal final, Lee got a key piece of advice before heading out onto the strip.

“My coach basically told me that the finals strip is for winning, so just keep fencing,” she laughed.  

Lee held a five-touch lead for much of the bout and was up, 14-10, at the conclusion of the first period and needed less than 20 seconds in the second period to finish the bout, 15-10.

Coming off the holiday break and not much training time, Lee said she returned to Kentucky with few expectations for the tournament.

“I didn’t really have a lot of expectations because I’ve fenced four times since the last NAC. I was just going to have fun with it and fence as well as I could and it turned out that it was a really good day,” Lee said. “I was at a better level than I usually bring to the strip. Whenever I fence, I’m usually distracted or I’m overthinking the bout, but today I was able to go out and just fence and I had a lot of fun.”

Lee’s trip to Kentucky also meant a rare chance to see family and high school friends.

“It’s great fencing here because I really haven’t been home much since leaving for college and seeing the kids from Louisville and being back in a more familiar setting is kind of nice,” she said.

In the junior men’s epee competition, Ukrainian Yevgeniy Karyuchenko edged 2011 Cadet World Team member Brian Ro (Scarsdale, N.Y.), 15-14, in the semifinal and went on to defeat Justin Wan (North Hills, N.Y.), 15-7, to win gold.

Fifteen-year-old Calvin Liang (Phoenix, Ariz.) came one step closer to qualifying for his first Cadet World Team with a gold medal win in the cadet men’s saber event.

Liang, who was ranked fourth in the team standings at the start of the event, will move up to third when the new rankings are released this week – a position he hopes to hold through the Junior Olympic Championships in February when the team will be named.

But first, Liang had to make it through a field of 209 opponents on Saturday.

“I looked and saw that there were 200 people registered and knew I had to train really hard so I spent a lot more time doing cardio just so I could keep up and my coach and I did long days of bouting – like four hours – so it was almost like a mini-competition really so working and trying to get that stamina up was really important,” Liang said.

Liang won his first two direct elimination bouts by 15-4 and 15-6 margins and narrowly made the quarter-finals after a 15-13 win over Sean Li (San Francisco, Calif.)

In the quarter-finals, Liang defeated Edward Chin (Livingston, N.J.), the second-ranked cadet men’s saber fencer in the nation, 15-11, to advance to the medal rounds.

Liang held an 8-5 lead after the first period of his semifinal against eighth-ranked Jason Meng (Newton, Mass.), but Meng came back to tie the bout at 12 in the second. With the score tied again at 14, Liang took the last touch to win the bout, 15-14.

Liang took an early lead against Karol Metryka (Linden, N.J.) in the gold medal final and held off a comeback attempt by the 15-year-old to win the bout, 15-8.

“When I’m in the lead, that normally means the actions I’ve made are working, so then I stick to the actions I know are going to get me those touches. When Karol changed, he started drawing me out more and picked up points which means I have to change corresponding to his action,” Liang said.  “Karol and I have had a lot of back and forth – victories and losses – all over the place, but you can’t assume anything. You always have to change because fencing’s a changing sport and, tactically, every bout is different.”

Liang will return to competition on Monday when he will fence in the junior men’s saber event where he said his cadet win will give him added confidence while competing against older fencers.

“I know that I can fence well and keep up.  Especially today because we had over 200 fencers which is unheard of, really, for saber, so it’s good to know I can keep my stamina up the whole time. At Summer Nationals I had a major cramp and I almost had to withdraw, so knowing I had the stamina to keep up all day is really reassuring,” Liang said.

In the Y14 women’s saber event, Maia Chamberlain (Menlo Park, Calif.) completed the rare feat of winning two shutout bouts at a NAC.

The 14-year-old began the direct elimination tables with a 15-0 win over 12-year-old Amelia Malone (St. Louis, Mo.) and ended the day with a 15-0 victory over 14-year-old Lauren Kim (Plano, Texas) in the gold medal final.

Y14 men’s foil fencer Sam Moelis (Hewlett, N.Y.) advanced to his second NAC gold medal final in less than a year on Saturday. Moelis, who won a silver medal at the April NAC last year and was seeded first at this NAC, defeated 14-year-old Jonathan Schwartzman (Beverly Hills, Calif.), 10-4, to earn his first Y14 NAC title.

Competition continues on Sunday with the schedule as follows:

Sunday, Jan. 20
8:30 a.m.
Junior Men’s Foil
Junior Women’s Saber

11 a.m.
Y-14 Women’s Epee


2 p.m.
Cadet Women’s Foil


2:30 p.m.
Y-14 Men’s Saber


Click here to view complete results.


Top eight results are as follows:


Junior Women’s Epee
1. Catherine Lee (Elizabethtown, Ky.)
2. Audrey Yun (Los Angeles, Calif.)
3. Aleina Edwards (Los Angeles, Calif.)
3. Mason Speta (Chicago, Ill.)
5. Jessie Radanovich (Tollhouse, Calif.)
6. Kimberly Young (Gilbert, Ariz.)
7. Emma Peterson (Santa Monica, Calif.)
8. Shawn Wallace (Boston, Mass.)

Junior Men’s Epee
1. Yevgeniy Karyuchenko (UKR)
2. Justin Wan (North Hills, N.Y.)
3. Ayyub Ibrahim (Bronx, N.Y.)
3. Brian Ro (Scarsdale, N.Y.)
5. Spencer Amann (Westminster, Colo.)
6. James Salem (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
7. Simon Jones (Providence, R.I.)
8. MacGregor Mooney (Arcadia, Calif.)

Cadet Men’s Saber
1. Calvin Liang (Phoenix, Arix.)
2. Karol Metryka (Linden, N.J.)
3. Alexander Gorloff (Wyckoff, N.J.)
3. Jason Meng (Newton, Mass.)
5. Edward Chin (Livingston, N.J.)
6. Gavin Turner (Rehoboth, Mass.)
7. Blake Murphy (Atlanta, Ga.)
8. Hector Florencia (MEX)

Y14 Women’s Saber
1. Maia Chamberlain (Menlo Park, Calif.)
2. Lauren Kim (Plano, Texas)
3. Mary Barnett (Lake Oswego, Ore.)
3. Jacqueline Litynski (Schenectady, N.Y.)
5. Alicja Tomaszewski (Morris Plains, N.J.)
6. Casey Chan (Cresskill, N.J.)
7. Christina Boitano (Hillsboro, Ore.)
8. Rose Adams (Sacramento, Calif.)

Y14 Men’s Foil
1. Sam Moelis (Hewlett, N.Y.)
2. Jonathan Schwartzman (Beverly Hills, Calif.)
3. Julian Knodt (Palo Alto, Calif.)
3. Tyler Marcos (Purdys, N.Y.)
5. McConnell Gou (Saratoga, Calif.)
6. Steele Ruelle (Overland Park, Kans.)
7. Alexandre Amice (Saint Louis, Mo.)
8. Austin Li (Bellevue, Wash.)

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