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Sara Taffel Wins Junior Women's Foil Title at November NAC

11/09/2014, 9:15am CST
By Nicole Jomantas

Junior women's foil gold medalist Sara Taffel.

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – The November North American Cup opened on Friday with gold medals awarded in four events across the Y14, cadet and junior age groups at the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville, Ky.

A silver medalist at both the 2012 Cadet World Championships and 2014 Division I National Championships, foil fencer Sara Taffel (New York City, N.Y.) won her first junior North American Cup title on Friday.

Seeded first out of the pools, Taffel dominated the early rounds of the direct elimination tables.

After a 15-3 win against Kianna Parker (Bronx, N.Y.) in the table of 128, Taffel won her next three bouts by 15-7 margins against Grace Hao (Coppell, Texas), Woojoo Kwon (CAN) and Jade Rowland (Princeton Junction, N.J.)

Taffel defeated Rebecca Stanford (Brooklyn, N.Y.), 15-1, in the quarters to advance to the semifinals where she won her bout against her Fencers Club teammate, Samantha Viqueira (Maplewood, N.J.), by a score of 15-9.

Taffel took her final bout down to the wire as she defeated two-time Cadet World Team member Morgan Partridge (Swansea, Mass.), 15-14.

Ranked No. 2 in the nation, cadet men’s foil fencer Geoffrey Tourette (Cupertino, Calif.) was nearly unstoppable on Friday. Tourette shut out four opponents in pools and gave up just three touches total to earn the top seed in the direct elimination tables.

In the DE rounds, Tourette earned a bye into the table of 128 and held each of his next six opponents to single-digit scores. In the gold medal final, Tourette fenced his Silicon Valley Fencing Center teammate, Sidarth Kumbla (San Jose, Calif.), and won the bout, 15-12.

The win is the third gold medal of the season for Tourette who took gold at the July North American Cup and the Gyor Cadet European Cup.

The cadet women’s saber event came down to two fencers who are both hopefuls for the 2015 Cadet World Team – 2014 Cadet World Team member Sarah Merza (Wayne, N.J.) and Kara Linder (Chandler, Ariz.) who won the first Cadet European Cup of the season in Konin Poland in September.

Merza won the bout, 15-14, to retain her ranked as the No. 2 fencer in the nation.

In the Y14 men’s epee event, Diego Calderon (San Diego, Calif.) was seeded 17th out of the pools, but won his first four DE bouts by seven touches or more to advance to the semifinals where he defeated Anton Chmut (Brooklyn, N.Y.), 15-13. Calderon defeated Eliot Herbst (Houston, Texas), 15-11, to win his first NAC title.

Click here to view complete results.

Top eight results are as follows:

Junior Women’s Foil
1. Sara Taffel (New York City, N.Y.)
2. Morgan Partridge (Swansea, Mass.)
3. Samantha Viqueira (Maplewood, N.J.)
3. Stefani Deschner (Mechanicsville, N.J.)
5. Jessie Laffey (Glen Ridge, N.J.)
6. Liana Semel (NZL)
7. Alexa Prasher (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
8. Rebecca Stanford (Brooklyn, N.Y.)

Cadet Men’s Foil
1. Geoffrey Tourette (Cupertino, Calif.)
2. Sidarth Kumbla (San Jose, Calif.)
3. Mohamed Hamza (Pearland, Texas)
3. Eoin Gronningsater (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
5. Nick Itkin (Los Angeles, Calif.)
6. Daniel Gu (CAN)
7. Lucas Orts (Burlingame, Calif.)
8. Aiden Ahn (Los Angeles, Calif.)

Cadet Women’s Saber
1. Sarah Merza (Wayne, N.J.)
2. Kara Linder (Chandler, Ariz.)
3. Jessica Whang (Westfield, N.J.)
3. Esther Bentolila (Hollywood, Fla.)
5. Francesca Fedorovsky (San Clemente, Calif.)
6. Violet Michel (Cambridge, Mass.)
7. Zara Moss (Cranberry Township, Pa.)
8. Signe Golash (Syracuse, N.Y.)

Y14 Men’s Epee
1. Diego Calderon (San Diego, Calif.)
2. Eliot Herbst (Houston, Texas)
3. Anton Chmut (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
3. Ryan Griffiths (Fairlawn, N.J.)
5. Emon Daroian (Encino, Calif.)
6. Isaac Herbst (Houston, Texas)
7. Tarun Nair (Katy, Texas)
8. Theodore Lombardo (Mount Kisco, N.Y.)

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