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U.S. Men’s Epee Team Finishes Seventh at Basel Junior World Cup

01/19/2015, 11:15pm CST
By Nicole Jomantas

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – The U.S. Junior Men’s Epee Team earned its first top-eight finish of the season on Sunday where Anton Piskovatskov (Houston, Texas), Michael Popovici (Katy, Texas), Ariel Simmons (Bellaire, Texas) and Samuel Freiman (Woodlands, Texas) finished seventh in a field of 22 teams.

Anchoring Team USA, Piskovatskov led the Americans to a 45-14 win in the table of 32 over Ireland.

Team USA won or tied eight of its nine bouts against Japan in the table of 16 with Simmons outscoring Akira Komata, 12-7, in the final bout for a 45-36 win.

In the quarter-finals, Team USA held the match against Great Britain close and was within two touches of tying the score after the fifth period where GB held a 25-23 lead. Great Britain won each of the next four bouts, however, to take a 45-34 victory.

Team USA’s next match would be against Israel – a team led by the top-ranked junior men’s epee fencer in the world – Yuval Shalom Freilich.

Piskovatskov returned to the anchor role and held a 42-40 lead midway through the final bout, but Freilich came back with four singles to set the score at 44-42. Piskovatskov picked up a single to come within a touch of Israel before Freilich doubled out to win the match, 45-44.

Fencing for seventh, Team USA won eight straight bouts against Egypt and Simmons closed out a 43-33 win for the Americans.

In the individual event, Freiman and Curtis McDowald (Jamaica, N.Y.) both placed in the top 32.

After posting 4-2 and 3-3 pool results, respectively, McDowald and Freiman each earned byes into the table of 128.

McDowald built a 9-1 lead against Patryk Szalma (POL) and went on to earn a first period win by a score of 15-5. In the table of 64, Alexander Riedel (GER) scored first, but it was McDowald who took the lead after the second touch and never gave it up, winning the bout, 15-12.

True to form, McDowald attacked quickly in his table of 32 bout and led Valter Mickwitz (FIN), 9-3, early in the second period. Mickwitz finished the period strong, however, and held a 13-11 lead by the start of the third where he gave up just one single to McDowald and won the bout, 15-12.

In Freiman’s table of 128 bout, Michal Opalka (POL) finished the first period with a one touch lead at 7-6. The second period was all Freiman as the American opened with seven straight singles and finished the bout, 15-9.

Freiman led his table of 64 bout from start to finish and defeated Daniel Horvath (HUN), 15-13, in the third period.

In the table of 32, Freiman trailed top seed Nelson Lopez Pourtier (FRA), 4-1, early in the first period and never regained ground as Lopez Pourtier went on to take the win, 15-9.

Click here to view complete individual results.

Click here to view complete team results.

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

Basel Individual Epee Junior World Cup
1. Yan Sych (UKR)
2. David Nagy (HUN)
3. Romain Cannone (FRA)
3. Yulon Pereira (ESP)
5. Nelson Lopez Pourtier (FRA)
6. Josef Mahringer (AUT)
7. Yuval Shalom Freilich (ISR)
8. Tom Bontes (NED)

27. Curtis McDowald (Jamaica, N.Y.)
30. Samuel Freiman (Woodlands, Texas)
36. Darius Zacharakis (Houston, Texas)
46. Anton Piskovatskov (Houston, Texas)
52. Sean White (Manassas, Va.)
87. Clinton Rodell (Annandale, Va.)
96. Robin Cheong (San Antonio, Texas)
100. Hans Engel (New York, N.Y.)
128. Dante Centeno (Lynbrook, N.Y.)
151. Joshua Cole (Chappaqua, N.Y.)
166. Ariel Simmons (Bellaire, Texas)

Basel Team Epee Junior World Cup
1. Hungary
2. Ukraine
3. Poland
4. Great Britain
5. Israel
6. Switzerland
7. USA
8. Egypt

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