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Lovejoy and Bouwkamp Win Silver and Bronze at Wheelchair Worlds

08/13/2013, 6:45pm CDT
By Nicole Jomantas

U.S. medalists Cat Bouwkamp and Curtis Lovejoy.

(Budapest, Hungary) – The last time a wheelchair fencer reached the podium at a World Championships was 2006 when Curtis Lovejoy (College Park, Ga.) took gold in the Category C men’s foil event.

Lovejoy, a Sydney Paralympian, returned to international competition this season to pick up where he left off.

At 56-years-old, Lovejoy was one of the oldest members of Team USA in Budapest and it was the youngest – 17-year-old Cat Bouwkamp (Fishers, Ind.) – who also brought home hardware for the Americans.

Lovejoy entered the Category C epee quarter-finals on Aug. 8 as the sixth seed after a 3-4 pool result and would fence William Russo – the Italian who knocked him out of the epee quarters at the World Cup in Poland last month. Russo led the bout, but Lovejoy pulled off a late comeback to take the win, 15-13.

“I kinda got mad. I thought about the guy I was competing against and how I lost to him in Poland last time and I thought ‘No, I’ve gotta take this,’” Lovejoy said of his come-from-behind win.

After a comfortable 15-8 win over second seeded Oleksiy Sundiyev in the semifinals, Lovejoy trailed Russian Alexander Logutenko in the gold medal final, but fought back to tie the bout in the final seconds at 11 touches each.

The bout went into sudden death overtime where Logutenko scored the final touch to take the win, 12-11.

“I missed some opportunities along the way, but I knew I needed to make sure that I used a lot of power and I knew I’d be able to come back. I just lost in priority. Most of the time it’s a distance game and running out the clock is how I like to play anyway. It turns out that I didn’t win it, but that’s ok. It was just one last touch,” Lovejoy said. “There’s been a lot of pressure put on me this year. I came back the first of the year and I said that I wanted to try to win the gold medal. And it’s been through the collective support of a lot of people that was able to do this – of [Coach] Julio [Diaz] and of Maestro [Les Stawicki]. And plus, to be here at 56-years-old and win at World Championships is just amazing.”

Lovejoy and Logutenko met up again in the foil event where the Russian took the win, 15-12, in the quarter-finals on his way to win gold.

Although Bouwkamp missed the cut out of pools by just two touches in the Category A epee competition, she returned the next day to fence in the Combined Category saber competition.

Bouwkamp, who was a nationally ranked able-bodied saber fencer until she was 12, added epee to her repertoire when she began competing in wheelchair fencing since women’s saber is not on the Paralympic program.

“I came out of epee not being happy with where I was in the standings and I knew saber, obviously, is my weapon and I wanted to show them that I could come back and what I could do with my own weapon,” Bouwkamp said.

Seeded fourth out of the pools, Bouwkamp earned a bye into the quarter-finals where she edged Marta Fidrych (POL), 15-13.

In the semifinals, Bouwkamp faced Ukrainian Natalia Morkvych who controlled the bout to take the win, 15-5.

The win is the first Wheelchair World Championship medal for a U.S. women's saber fencer and the high school senior was the youngest athlete on the podium.

“I’ve medaled at World Cups before, but it’s a completely different level here. It’s really exciting. I just felt really ‘on,’” Bouwkamp said.

Two of Bouwkamp’s teammates from the London Games each placed in the top eight in Budapest.

Joey Brinson (Florence, Miss.) upset 2012 Paralympic silver medalist Chik Sum Tam (HKG), 14-13, when their Category B men’s saber table of 16 bout went to time. In the quarter-finals, however, Brinson lost to Adrian Castro (POL), 15-3, and finished eighth.

Ryan Estep (Florence, Miss.), a seventh-place finisher at the 2011 Wheelchair World Championships, finished seventh in Budapest in the Category B men’s epee event. Seeded sixth out of the pools, Estep defeated Vanderson Chaves (BRA), 15-6, in the table of 32 and won his table of 16 bout against Andrei Pranevich (BLR), 15-12. One win away from a bronze medal, Estep lost his quarter-final bout to Amar Ali (IRQ), 15-7.

Visit http://www.engarde-service.com/files/wch2013/wch2013/ for complete results.

Top eight and U.S. results are as follows:

Men’s Individual Category A Epee
1. Jianquan Tian (CHN)
2. Romain Noble (FRA)
3. Gang Sun (CHN)
3. Artur Yusupov (RUS)
5. Roman Fedyaev (RUS)
6. Martyn Kavalenia (BLR)
7. Hasan Zainulabdeen (IRQ)
8. Dariusz Pender (POL)

30. Russell Oswalt (Von Ormy, Texas)

Men’s Individual Category B Epee
1. Alexander Kuzyukov (RUS)
2. Amar Ali (IRQ)
3. Chik Sum Tam (HKG)
3. Maxime Valet (FRA)
5. Grzegorz Pluta (POL)
6. Nikolai Bezyazchny (BLR)
7. Ryan Estep (Florence, Miss.)
8. Marc Andre Cratere (FRA)

26. Joey Brinson (Florence, Miss.)
28. Josh Russell (Mendenhall, Miss.)

Men’s Individual Category C Epee
1. Alexander Logutenko (RUS)
2. Curtis Lovejoy (College Park, Ga.)
3. Sergey Barinov (RUS)
3. Oleksiy Sundiyev (UKR)
5. William Russo (ITA)
6. Kanstantsin Kavaliou (BLR)
7. Nikolay Lukyanov (RUS)
8. Adam Michalowski (POL)

Men’s Team Epee
1. China
2. Russia
3. Iraq
4. Poland
5. France
6. Hong Kong
7. Thailand
8. Belarus

12. USA

Women’s Individual Category A Epee
1. Jing Rong (CHN)
2. Baili Wu (CHN)
3. Yuliya Efimova (RUS)
3. Marta Fidrych (POL)
5. Olga Irneva (RUS)
6. Zsuzsanna Krajnyak (HUN)
7. Justine Charissa Ng (HKG)
8. Pui Shan Fan (HKG)

26. Catherine Bouwkamp (Fishers, Ind.)

Women’s Individual Category B Epee
1. Saysunee Jana (THA)
2. Simone Briese-Baetke (GER)
3. Viktoriya Bokyova (RUS)
3. Fang Yao (CHN)
5. Ludmila Vasileva (RUS)
6. Jingjing Zhou (CHN)
7. Marta Makowska (POL)
8. Alesia Makrytskaya (BLR)

17. Ellen Geddes (Johnston, S.C.)
19. Mia Ives-Rublee (Durham, N.C.)

Women’s Team Epee
1. China
2. Russia
3. Hungary
4. Thailand
5. Hong Kong
6. Poland
7. Ukraine
8. Belarus

Men’s Individual Category A Foil
1. Ruyi Ye (CHN)
2. Richard Osvath (HUN)
3. Yijun Chen (CHN)
3. Roman Fedyaev (RUS)
5. Dariusz Pender (POL)
6. Rafal Ziomek (POL)
7. Wing Kin Chan (HKG)
8. Damien Tokatlian (FRA)

30. Russell Oswalt (Von Ormy, Texas)
31. Dennis Aspy (Woodstock, Ga.)

Men’s Individual Category B Foil
1. Daoliang Hu (CHN)
2. Anton Datsko (UKR)
3. Nikolai Bezyazychny (BLR)
3. Marat Yusupov (RUS)
5. Alessio Sarri (ITA)
6. Alexander Kuzyukov (RUS)
7. Maxime Valet (ITA)
8. Marco Cima (ITA)

25. Gerard Moreno (Los Angeles, Calif.)

Men’s Individual Category C Foil
1. Alexander Logutenko (RUS)
2. Sergey Barinov (RUS)
3. Nikolay Lukyanov (RUS)
3. Will Russo (ITA)
5. Oleksiy Sundiyev (UKR)
6. Curtis Lovejoy (College Park, Ga.)
7. Adam Michalowski (POL)

Men’s Team Foil
1. China
2. Russia
3. Hong Kong
4. Poland
5. France
6. Ukraine
7. Italy
8. Great Britain

9. USA

Women’s Individual Category A Foil
1. Chui Yee Yu (HKG)
2. Jing Bian (CHN)
3. Justine Charissa Ng (HKG)
3. Baili Wu (CHN)
5. Zsuzsanna Krajnyak (HUN)
6. Jing Rong (CHN)
7. Elena Chervyakova (RUS)
8. Eva Andrea Hajmasi (HUN)

Women’s Individual Category B Foil
1. Fang Yao (CHN)
2. Yui Chong Chan (HKG)
3. Simone Briese-Baetke (GER)
3. Jingjing Zhou (CHN)
5. Irina Mishurova (RUS)
6. Marta Makowska (POL)
7. Saysunee Jana (THA)
8. Gyongyi Dani (HUN)

16. Ellen Geddes (Johnston, S.C.)
18. Mia Ives-Rublee (Durham, N.C.)

Women’s Team Foil
1. Hong Kong
2. China
3. Hungary
4. Russia
5. Thailand
6. Ukraine
7. Belarus

Men’s Individual Category A Saber
1. Yijun Chen (CHN)
2. Jianquan Tian (CHN)
3. Andrej Demchuk (UKR)
3. Ludovic Lemoine (FRA)
5. Romain Noble (FRA)
6. Wing Kin Chan (HKG)
7. Ruyi Ye (CHN)
8. Vadym Tsedrik (UKR)

24. Dennis Aspy (Woodstock, Ga.)
25. Leo Curtis (Portland, Ore.)

Men’s Individual Category B Saber
1. Alessio Sarri (ITA)
2. Marc Andre Cratere (FRA)
3. Adrian Castro (POL)
3. Grzegorz Pluta (POL)
5. Alexander Kurzin (RUS)
6. Anton Datsko (UKR)
7. Emanouil Bogdos (GRE)
8. Joey Brinson (Florence, Miss.)

15. Ryan Estep (Florence, Miss.)
19. Gerard Moreno (Los Angeles, Calif.)

Men’s Team Saber
1. Ukraine
2. Hong Kong
3. France
4. Poland
5. Russia
6. Greece
7. Malaysia
8. USA

Women’s Individual Combined Saber
1. Jing Bian (CHN)
2. Natalia Morkvych (UKR)
3. Catherine Bouwkamp (Fishers, Ind.)
3. Yevheniia Breus (UKR)
5. Irina Vidrashko (RUS)
6. Marta Fidrych (POL)
7. Albina Kuramshina (RUS)
8. Renata Burdon (POL)

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