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Justin Yoo Wins Silver, Kasia Nixon Earns Bronze at Cadet Worlds

04/06/2014, 9:00pm CDT
By Nicole Jomantas

Justin Yoo (far left) won men's epee silver at the Cadet Worlds. Photo Credit: Serge Timacheff / FIE /

Kasia Nixon (second from right) won bronze in cadet women's epee. Photo Credit: Serge Timacheff / FIE /

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Team USA’s epee fencers reached the Cadet World podium on Saturday when Justin Yoo (La Verne, Calif.) and Kasia Nixon (Los Angeles, Calif.) won silver and bronze, respectively, in Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

A first-time Cadet World Team member, Yoo was seeded first in the table of 32 and opened the second day of competition with a 15-10 victory over 2014 Cadet European Champion Rico Braun (GER).

Yoo faced another German in the table of 16 and controlled his bout against Marco Brinkmann for a 15-9 win.

In the quarter-finals, Yoo burst out to a 6-0 lead against three-time Cadet European Championship medalist Gergely Sikosi (HUN) and finished with a 15-8 win in three periods.

Yoo was tied with his semifinal opponent, Dylan French (CAN) first at 3-3 and then at 7-7 before he went on a 6-2 lead to close the second period at 13-9. Yoo gave up two singles to French in the third, but took a single of his own before ending the bout with a double and a 15-12 score.

Yoo had a strong first period against Patrik Esztergalyos and held the Hungarian scoreless for a 5-0 lead heading into the second period. Esztergalyos cut Yoo’s lead to one at 8-7 by the start of the third and caught Yoo with a single with 11 seconds on the clock to tie the bout at 14. The Hungarian scored again 14 seconds into the sudden death overtime minute and won the gold by a single touch, 15-14.

Yoo’s teammate on both the U.S. squad and at the Los Angeles International Fencing Center, Charlie Horowitz (Los Angeles, Calif.) advanced to the table of 32, but lost to Kei Hsu Albert Chen (HKG), 15-12, and finished in 29th place.

Nixon, who also fences for LAIFC, was the only epee fencer on the cadet team to have fenced at last year’s Cadet Worlds.

Seeded second after the pools and prelim rounds, Nixon said her experience at the 2013 Cadet Worlds helped prepare her for this year’s event.

“I knew what kind of fencers I was going to be up against and what kind of fight they were going to bring,” she said.

After a 15-12 win over Alexandra Predescu (ROU), Nixon and Sinhee Lee (KOR) were given a non-combattivity call with one touch each to send the bout into the second period. Nixon outscored Lee, 7-2, in the second period and finished the win with a score of 15-8 in the third.

Non-combattivity came into play again in the quarter-finals when Nixon and 2014 Cadet European Team Champion Daria Filina (RUS) had their bout sent to the second period with the score at zero. Nixon scored five straight touches and went on to finish the period at 9-4. Filina made a late comeback in the final period, but Nixon won the bout, 15-12.

Fencing in the semis, Nixon and Kinga Nagy (HUN) also began the bout with a non-combattivity call with no scores made by either athlete. Although it was her third in as many bouts, Nixon said passivity isn’t part of her strategy.  

“I don’t usually plan for non-combattivity. If I look at the time and see it’s coming up on one minute, I’ll usually back off and just let it go to the next period. When it happens, my coach and I discuss what to do,” Nixon said.

Nixon held an 8-7 lead going into the final minute of the third period, but Nagy outscored her, 5-1, to win the bout, 12-9.

“I have a lot of mixed emotions. I’m happy because I trained really hard this summer, but I’m also disappointed because I feel like I could have won my last bout,” Nixon said.

Gigi Vierheller (Houston, Texas) also advanced to the table of 32 where she upset No. 3 seed Nelli Ladanyi (HUN), 12-11, in overtime.

Vierheller fenced Nagy in the table of 16, but lost the bout, 15-12, and finished 14th.

Charlene Liu (Bridgewater, N.J.) had her table of 32 bout against Kim Treudt-Gooser (GER) come down to the wire. With the score tied at 13 in the third, Liu picked up a single and doubled out for a 15-14 victory.

Liu lost her next bout, 15-6, to two-time Cadet European Championships medalist Federica Isola (ITA) and placed 10th overall.

Preliminary competition in cadet women’s saber and men’s foil also was held on Saturday.

U.S. fencers Sarah Merza (Wayne, N.J.) and Violet Michel (Cambridge, Mass.) both advanced to the women’s saber table of 32.

Merza went 5-1 in the pools and defeated Mariia Martseniuk (UKR), 15-10, in the table of 64.

Michel finished 4-2 in the pools and edged Sara Atrouz (ALG), 15-14, in her table of 64 bout.

Riya Dave (Ardsley, N.Y.) also posted a 4-2 pool result, but was eliminated after she lost to Woojeong Lee (KOR), 15-13.

All three cadet men’s foil fencers advanced to the table of 32 .

Aaron Ahn (Los Angeles, Calif.) finished the pools with a 5-1 record while his teammates, Jarred Gou (Saratoga, Calif.) and George Haglund (Califon, N.J.) went 4-1 and 4-2, respectively.

Ranked sixth in the table of 64, Ahn nearly shut out Aidan Heffernan (CAN) with a 15-1 victory.

Gou also won a decisive direct elimination bout, 15-5, over Pavel Tychler (RSA) in the table of 64.

Seeded 42nd, Haglund needed two wins to advance to the second day and did so by 15-6 and 15-11 margins against Henrik Egyenes Porsok (SVK) and Ciaran Veitenheimer (GER).

Visit for complete results.

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

Cadet Worlds Men’s Epee
1. Patrik Esztergalyos (HUN)
2. Justin Yoo (La Verne, Calif.)
3. Gergely Toth (HUN)
3. Dylan French (CAN)
5. Ivan Limarev (RUS)
6. Linus Islas Flygare (SWE)
7. Gergely Siklosi (HUN)
8. Riccardo Abate (ITA)

29. Charlie Horowitz (Los Angeles, Calif.)
39. Joshua Cole (Chappaqua, N.Y.)

Cadet Worlds Women’s Epee
1. Eleonora De Marchi (ITA)
2. Kinga Nagy (HUN)
3. Asa Linde (Swe)
3. Kasia Nixon (Los Angeles, Calif.)
5. Inna Brovko (UKR)
6. Daria Filina (RUS)
7. Fanny Depanian (FRA)
8. Federica Isola (ITA)

10. Charlene Liu (Bridgewater, N.J.)
14. Gigi Vierheller (Houston, Texas)

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