(Columbus, Ohio) – Columbus natives Joe Streb (Columbus, Ohio) and Peter Grandbois (Granville, Ohio) each achieved the rare feat of both winning a national title in front of a hometown crowd as well as qualifying for this year’s Veteran World Championships on Sunday at the USA Fencing National Championships.
Streb earned a bye into the table of 16 of the veteran 60-69 men’s foil event where he defeated James Brykczynski (Ewing, N.J.), 10-3. Streb shut out Marek Piatkowski Nazarro (Pasadena, Calif.), 10-0, in the quarter-finals and defeated his former Veteran World teammate, Jan Patterson (Seattle, Wash.), 7-3, in the semis.
In the gold medal final, Streb and Thomas Lutton (Cupertino, Calif.) were tied at eight touches when Streb scored twice in four seconds to win the bout, 10-8.
“I needed to make sure I was finishing my attacks. I got hit a couple times with attack in preparation because I didn’t finish my attacks hard enough. Mr. Lutton is a very good fencer and it’s important that, when you’re fencing against him, if you’re going to attack, you need to attack hard,” Streb said of his close final bout.
Although Streb won Nationals in the veteran combined foil in 1999, the victory is Streb’s first National Championship gold medal in the weapon since the tournament was broken into age groups.
“It’s great winning Nationals in my hometown. It’s been a long time coming because I’ve been in the finals several times, but never quite gotten over the hump,” said Streb who was coached by his son, Joseph Streb Jr. (Columbus, Ohio) – a former Ohio State University foil fencer.
Streb’s result on Sunday, combined with his bronze medal finish at the April North American Cup, allowed him to qualify for the U.S. team that will compete at the Veteran World Championships for athletes ages 50 and older in October.
Streb will compete again on Tuesday when he goes for a chance at a second gold medal in saber – a weapon in which he has already qualified for the Veteran World Team due to gold and silver medal wins on the NAC circuit this year.
“The goal is to win the National Championship in saber too; however, I’ve already qualified for the Veteran World Team in saber, so I’m happy to be sitting in that position,” Streb said.
Streb’s foil teammates at the Veteran Worlds will include Patterson as well as 2007 Veteran World Team member Frank Thomiszer (Nicholasville, Ky.) and Glenn Pantel (Mendham, N.J.) who will be fencing on his first Vet World Team.
Peter Grandbois (Granville, Ohio), an assistant professor at Dennison University, garnered a second National Championship title for the city of Columbus with his victory in the veteran 50-59 men’s foil event.
Fencing in his first season as a veteran, Grandbois came into the Nationals with his position secured after winning gold at both the December and April NACs.
“These guys are really strong and I take them all seriously because I knew there was going to be a lot of hard bouts. I really wanted this and I didn’t come in overconfident,” Grandbois said.
The second seed out of the pools, Grandbois gave up just one touch in his opening two bouts to get into the semifinals.
After a bye to qualify for the table of 32, the second seed defeated Matthew Denman (Yellow Springs, Ohio), 10-1, and Dale Karolak (Brighton, Mich.), 10-0.
Grandbois won his quarter-final bout over four-time Veteran World Team member Ed Kaihatsu (Skokie, Ill.), 10-5, and defeated Tamas Vidovszky (Folsom, Calif.), 10-4, to advance to the gold medal final.
In a rematch of the April NAC final bout, the gold medal bout pitted Grandbois against two-time Veteran World Team member Jamie Douraghy (Los Angeles, Calif.) Grandbois started with a 3-0 lead and went on to win the bout, 10-5.
“We were both smiling under our masks quite a bit. We were both injured – his knee, my elbow – and we were both struggling quite a bit, but he’s a very tough competitor and, even though he was hurting, he was still on it,” Grandbois said. “For me this is surreal because I’ve never been a National Champion before so that was a dream and making the World Team is a dream. I’ve never done that before. I was an alternate a couple times many years ago when I was younger for the senior team, so that’s nice. But to be on my home turf and win for my club, Columbus Fencing and Fitness, is wonderful.”
Grandbois and Douraghy will be joined on Team USA by veteran 50-59 foil fencers Paul Epply-Schmidt (Princeton, N.J.) and Julio Diaz (Lilburn, Ga.)
Two-time Veteran World Champion Liz Kocab (Farmington Hills, Mich.) won her third straight National Championship title in the veteran women’s epee 60-69 event.
Kocab entered the direct elimination tables as the top seed out of the pool and began her run to gold with a 10-0 shutout over her 2011 Vet World teammate Muriel Cawthorn (Rehoboth, Mass.) in the quarters. Anna Telles (Seattle, Wash.) their semifinal bout close, but Kocab took the win, 10-6.
Fencing for her third domestic gold medal of the season, Kocab took a 4-0 lead against her 2011 Veteran World teammate, Diane Kallus (Round Rock, Texas), early in the final round. Kallus scored four touches, but couldn’t catch Kocab who won the bout, 10-4.
Kocab, Kallus, Telles and Jann Ream (Iowa City, Iowa) all secured positions on the Veteran World Team.
While Kocab was guaranteed a position on the team after gold medal wins in December and April, Kallus shot up the rankings to claim a position on her 14th Veteran World Team alongside her husband, Ray Sexton III (Round Rock, Texas).
Between the two of them, Kallus and Sexton have won 17 medals at the Veteran Worlds.
Sexton, who took bronze in both the +70 saber and foil events at the Veteran Worlds, was seeded first in the veteran +70 foil event and won his first two bouts by 10-3 margins over his former Vet World teammates David Kosow (Gaithersburg, Md.) and Peter Calderon (Plainsboro, N.J.)
In the gold medal final, 2013 Veteran World Team member Davis Carvey (Seattle, Wash.) took a 4-2 lead at the start of the bout, but Sexton cut his lead to 8-7 by the break. In the second period, Sexton scored three straight touches for a 10-8 victory.
While Sexton was pleased to qualify for his 16th Veteran World Team, he said he was most excited to be able to represent Team USA with his wife.
“That’s really the highlight. We weren’t expecting it. She got second in Minneapolis so we hoped that she’d make the team this time. Getting another second was really the highlight of the day for sure,” said Sexton who coaches Kallus when he’s not competing himself.
With 10 Veteran World medals under his belt, Sexton could qualify for Team USA in all three weapons over the course of the weekend and is aiming to return to the podium when Vet Worlds are held this fall.
“Medaling is the goal. I don’t focus on first, second or third. Every year, medaling’s my goal,” Sexton said.
Cristina Gordet (Somerville, Mass.) successfully defended her 2013 National title in the veteran 50-59 women’s epee event.
The 2013 Veteran World bronze medalist had a series of close calls on her way to qualifying for her second Veteran World Team.
After edging Janet Jandura (Metuchen, N.J.), 10-9, Gordet won her quarter-final over Cristina Ford (Salem, Ore.), 3-3, in priority. In the semis, Gordet outtouched Joanne Groening (Farmingdale, N.Y.), 10-9.
Gordet and Suzanne Bloomer (Mountain View, Calif.) took a passivity call with the score tied at zero to send the gold medal bout into the final period where Gordet earned a 10-8 win.
The victory qualified Gordet for the Veteran Worlds with teammates Bloomer, Ford and Diane Trice (Silver Spring, Md.)
A gold medalist in veteran +70 women’s foil at the 2013 USA Fencing National Championships, Patricia Bedrosian (Malibu, Calif.) claimed the epee title this year. Bedrosian finished the pools with a 4-0 record to earn the first seed in the direct elimination rounds and a bye into the semifinals.
Although the 2013 Veteran World medalist had already secured her position on this year’s Vet World Team after her gold medal at the April NAC and silver in December, Bedrosian had to get past 2011 Veteran World medalist Bettie Graham (Washington, D.C.) Bedrosian led the bout, 6-5, at the break and scored the first two touches of the second period. Graham picked up a single to cut Bedrosian’s lead to one and, as Bedrosian went to finish the bout with the score at 9-8, Graham singled again to set up a tie with 34 seconds left in the bout. Bedrosian scored a single with 26 seconds on the clock to win the bout, 10-9.
In the gold medal final, newcomer Sally Higgins (Tinton Falls, N.J.) held a 7-6 lead over Bedrosian after the first period. Bedrosian scored three straight singles before giving up a score to Higgins. With a 9-8 lead late in the final minute, Bedrosian scored again to finish the bout, 10-8.
Bedrosian will be joined at the Veteran Worlds by Graham, Higgins and Catherine Radle (Atlanta, Ga.) who was eliminated in the quarter-finals, but took bronze at the last two NACs.
Two veteran events were held on Sunday in age categories that are not contested at the Veteran Worlds: the 40-49 men’s foil and women’s epee events.
Don Davis (Potomac, Md.) defeated Thomas Bryan (Durham, N.C.), 10-6, in the 40-49 men’s foil final bout.
In the veteran 40-49 women’s epee event, Claudine Barjak (San Antonio, Texas) won her gold medal final, 10-8, over Maria Copelan (Portland, Ore.)
Fourteen-year-old Daniel Solomon (Setauket, N.Y.) won his first National Championship when he took gold in the Division IA men’s saber event. Up, 8-7, in the second half of his gold medal bout against Donovan Deans (Chandler, Ariz.), Solomon scored four unanswered touches and finished the bout, 15-10.
Fifteen-year-old Matthew Comes (Bothell, Wash.) won the gold medal in Division III men’s epee. After two combattivity calls and a third period that began at just 1-1, Comes led his final bout against Andrew Pidhorodeckyj (Akron, Ohio), 10-7, in the second period and earned three straight singles to take the score to 13-7. Pidhorodeckyj scored off both a single and a double, but it was Comes who finished with a 15-9 win.
Camille Pham (Maplewood, N.J.) also won her first National title at just 15-years-old. With the score tied at 10 after three periods, Pham scored the first touch in overtime against Kirsten Denman (Yellow Springs, Ohio) to win the gold medal final, 11-10.
Competition at the USA Fencing National Championships and July North American Cup continues through July 3 at the Columbus Convention Center.
Click here to view complete results.
The complete roster of athletes who qualified for the Veteran World Team on Sunday is as follows:
Veteran Women’s 50-59 Epee World Team
Cristina Gordet (Somerville, Mass.)
Suzanne Bloomer (Mountain View, Calif.)
Cristina Ford (Salem, Ore.)
Diane Trice (Silver Spring, Md.)
Veteran Women’s 60-69 Epee World Team
Elizabeth Kocab (Farmington Hills, Mich.)
Diane Kallus (Round Rock, Texas)
Anna Telles (Seattle, Wash.)
Jann Ream (Iowa City, Iowa)
Veteran Women’s +70 Epee World Team
Patricia Bedrosian (Malibu, Calif.)
Bettie Graham (Washington, D.C.)
Sally Higgins (Tinton Falls, N.J.)
Catherine Radle (Atlanta, Ga.)
Diane Reckling (White Plains, N.Y.)
Veteran Men’s 50-59 Foil World Team
Peter Grandbois (Granville, Ohio)
Jamie Douraghy (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Paul Epply-Schmidt (Princeton, N.J.)
Julio Diaz (Lilburn, Ga.)
Veteran Men’s 60-69 Foil World Team
Jan Patterson (Seattle, Wash.)
Joseph Streb (Columbus, Ohio)
Frank Thomiszer (Nicholasville, Ky.)
Glenn Pantel (Mendham, N.J.)
Veteran Men’s +70 Foil World Team
Davis Carvey (Seattle, Wash.)
Jim Adams (Rockville, Md.)
Ray Sexton III (Round Rock, Texas)
Peter Calderon (Plainsboro, N.J.)
Click here to view complete tournament results.
Top eight results are as follows:
Veteran Women’s 40-49 Epee National Championships
1. Claudine Barjak (San Antonio, Texas)
2. Maria Copelan (Portland, Ore.)
3. Michele Tayengco (Henderson, Nev.)
3. Susan Vessels (Marietta, Ohio)
5. Ann Totemeier (Boulder, Colo.)
6. Carola Schmid (Seattle, Wash.)
7. Erica King (Brownstown, Mich.)
8. Valerie Hutchinson (Aurora, Colo.)
Veteran Women’s 50-59 Epee National Championships
1. Cristina Gordet (Somerville, Mass.)
2. Suzanne Bloomer (Mountain View, Calif.)
3. Amy Montoya (Las Vegas, Nev.)
3. Joanne Groening (Farmingdale, N.Y.)
5. Caroline Rich (Reno, Nev.)
6. Cristina Ford (Salem, Ore.)
7. Cynthia Glover (Seattle, Wash.)
8. Diane Trice (Silver Spring, Md.)
Veteran Women’s 60-69 Epee National Championships
1. Liz Kocab (Farmington Hills, Mich.)
2. Diane Kallus (Round Rock, Texas)
3. Anna Telles (Seattle, Wash.)
3. Anne-Marie Walters (Parkland, Fla.)
5. Jann Ream (Iowa City, Iowa)
6. Debra Allen (Ashland, Ore.)
7. Henri Gales (Greensboro, N.C.)
8. Muriel Cawthorn (Rehoboth, Mass.)
Veteran Women’s +70 Epee National Championships
1. Patricia Bedrosian (Malibu, Calif.)
2. Sally Higgins (Tinton Falls, N.J.)
3. Bettie Graham (Washington, D.C.)
3. Diane Reckling (White Plains, N.Y.)
5. Catherine Radle (Atlanta, Ga.)
Veteran Men’s 40-49 Foil National Championships
1. Don Davis (Potomac, Md.)
2. Thomas Bryan (Durham, N.C.)
3. Nathan Anderson (Denver, Colo.)
3. Darwin Martos (El Cerrito, Calif.)
5. Michael Cho (Northville, Mich.)
6. Rolando Balboa (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
7. Ron Thornton (Fredericksburg, Va.)
8. Kashi Way (Rockville, Md.)
Veteran 50-59 Men’s Foil National Championships
1. Peter Grandbois (Granville, Ohio)
2. Jamie Douraghy (Los Angeles, Calif.)
3. Paul Epply-Schmidt (Princeton, N.J.)
3. Tamas Vidovszky (Folsom, Calif.)
5. Robert Pavlovich (Manhasset, N.Y.)
6. Edward Kaihatsu (Skokie, Ill.)
7. Jeffrey Hudson (Glendale, Ohio)
8. Stephen Gross (Fairfax, Va.)
Veteran 60-69 Men’s Foil National Championships
1. Joseph Streb (Columbus, Ohio)
2. Thomas Lutton (Cupertino, Calif.)
3. Jan Patterson (Seattle, Wash.)
3. Frank Thomiszer (Nicholasville, Ky.)
5. Philippe Bennett (New York City, N.Y.)
6. Joseph Biebel (Bayside, Wis.)
7. Marek Piatkoski-Nazarro (Pasadena, Calif.)
8. Adrian Sessions (Los Altos, Calif.)
Veteran +70 Men’s Foil National Championships
1. Ray Sexton III (Round Rock, Texas)
2. Davis Carvey (Seattle, Wash.)
3. Jim Adams (Rockville, Md.)
3. Peter Calderon (Plainsboro, N.J.)
5. Fritz Chang (Lexington, Mass.)
6. Edward Sady (Fairfax, Va.)
7. William Barwick (Potomac, Md.)
8. David Kosow (Gaithersburg, Md.)
Division IA Men’s Saber National Championships
1. Daniel Solomon (Setauket, N.Y.)
2. Donovan Deans (Chandler, Ariz.)
3. Alex Lam (Lake Oswego, Calif.)
3. Jeffrey Dalli (San Carlos, Calif.)
5. Gabriel Braun (Seattle, Wash.)
5. Cole Clarkson (Reno, Nev.)
7. Jacob Asch (Alexandria, Va.)
8. Duncan Decaire (Sacramento, Calif.)
Division II Women’s Foil National Championships
1. Camille Pham (Maplewood, N.J.)
2. Kirsten Denman (Yellow Springs, Ohio)
3. Miya Herman (Hillsborough, Calif.)
3. Klarissa Armada (New York City, N.Y.)
5. Julia Shalansky (Providence, R.I.)
6. Sarah Mok (Louisville, Ky.)
7. Kate Dusinberre (Dover, N.H.)
8. Amy Jia (Houston, Texas)
Division III Men’s Epee National Championships
1. Matthew Comes (Bothell, Wash.)
2. Andrew Pidhorodeckyj (Akron, Ohio)
3. Shaun Stevenson (Columbus, Ohio)
3. Noah Carr (Baltic, Conn.)
5. Josh Munsey (St. George, Utah)
6. Jack Gillman (Glencoe, Ill.)
6. Edward Powell (Fargo, N.D.)
8. Gabriel Lane (Dobbs Ferry, N.Y.)