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London Olympians to Fence at NCAAs This Weekend

03/20/2013, 8:00pm CDT
By Nicole Jomantas

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Seven members of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Fencing Team are among the athletes who will be fencing for their universities this weekend at the NCAA Fencing Championships in San Antonio, Texas.

Having represented their country at the Games, they will now compete against each other at the Freeman Coliseum for a chance winning both individual and team NCAA titles.

While in international and USA Fencing tournaments, competitions begin with five or six five-touch round-robin bouts, the format of NCAAs begins with a 24-person round-robin.

Click here to view the field for each weapon and live results throughout the weekend.

Only the top four at the end of the round robins will advance to the semifinals at which point the remaining bouts will be 15 touches.

ESPN3 will air the semifinal and championship bouts live at 1:30 p.m. Central on Friday for the men’s events and Sunday for women the women’s. USA Fencing President Don Anthony Jr. (Columbus, Ohio) will serve as an analyst for the broadcast.

The men’s foil event will feature one of the best fields in recent history as three of the four U.S. Olympians will be in the mix. Gerek Meinhardt (Lafayette, Calif. / Notre Dame), Alexander Massialas (San Francisco, Calif. / Stanford) and Miles Chamley-Watson (Philadelphia, Pa. / Penn State) each won his respective NCAA Regional two weeks ago. The three have fenced together in team events internationally this season where the U.S. Men’s Foil Team won gold for the first time ever at the Paris World Cup in January and a historic silver medal at the La Coruna World Cup in Spain in February.

Meinhardt, a 2010 Senior World medalist and two-time Olympian, won his second international medal of the season on Sunday at the Venice Grand Prix. Although Chamley-Watson lost to Meinhardt in the quarters in Venice, his eighth-place result is the latest result in the redshirt senior’s best international season since placing fifth at the 2010 Senior Worlds. While Meinhardt won the NCAAs in 2010 and Chamley-Watson has placed in the top four three times, it’s 18-year-old Massialas who is ranked #1 in the U.S. and could become the first Stanford fencer to win gold at the event in 13 years.

In the women’s epee event, Notre Dame redshirt senior Courtney Hurley (San Antonio, Texas) has always excelled when the pressure is on. Although the 2011 NCAA Champion will be fencing in front of a hometown crowd in her final collegiate event, she’s no stranger to the spotlight as it was Hurley who scored the final overtime touch for Team USA when the women’s epee squad won bronze over Russia in London. One of Hurley’s greatest opponents will be her London teammate Susie Scanlan (St. Paul, Minn.) who has placed in the top eight at both of her previous NCAA appearances in 2009 and 2010 before taking two seasons off to train for London.

While there are no guarantees at the NCAAs, a loss to an American for 2011 Senior World medalist Lee Kiefer (Lexington, Ky.) is a rare event. A freshman at Notre Dame, the foil fencer is one of three Olympians fencing for the Fighting Irish and the London Olympian boasts a 32-6 record as a freshman.

Men’s saber fencer Daryl Homer (Bronx, N.Y.) has been a fixture in the final bout since his NCAA debut in 2009. A sixth-place finisher in London, the redshirt senior is seeking to end his collegiate career in San Antonio with a third title after winning the event in 2010 and 2011 and taking silver in 2009.  

Competition schedule is as follows (all times Central):

Thursday, March 21
9:30 a.m.
Men’s Foil Round Robin

11:15 a.m.
Men’s Epee Round Robin

1:30 p.m.
Men’s Saber Round Robin

Friday, March 22
9:30 a.m.
Men’s Epee, Foil and Saber Round Robins

1:30 p.m.
Men’s Semifinal and Championship Rounds

Saturday, March 23
9:30 a.m.
Women’s Foil Round Robin

11:15 a.m.
Women’s Epee Round Robin

1:30 p.m.
Women’s Saber Round Robin

Sunday, March 24
9 a.m.
Women’s Epee, Foil and Saber Round Robins

1:30 p.m.
Women’s Semifinal and Championship Rounds

Alexander Massialas (Foil), Stanford

Miles Chamley-Watson (Foil), Penn State

Gerek Meinhardt (Foil), Notre Dame

Courtney Hurley (Epee), Notre Dame

Susie Scanlan (Epee), Princeton

Lee Kiefer (Foil), Notre Dame

Daryl Homer (Saber), St. John's

Tag(s): News  Daryl Homer  Gerek Meinhardt  Miles Chamley-Watson