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Eli Dershwitz Defeats World Champion for Top-16 Finish at the Moscow Saber Grand Prix

05/31/2015, 7:45pm CDT
By Nicole Jomantas

Eli Dershwitz defeated four-time Senior World Champion Veniamin Reshetnikov (RUS) in the table of 32. Photo Credit: Augusto Bizzi / Federscherma

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Eli Dershwitz (Sherborn, Mass.), the reigning Junior World Champion, earned his first top-16 finish at a Grand Prix event on Saturday in Moscow.

After a 6-0 result in the pools on Friday, Dershwitz entered the table of 64 on Saturday as the No. 17 seed in a tournament that serves as the first Grand Prix of the qualifying series for the 2016 Olympic Games.

In the table of 64, Dershwitz fenced 2012 Olympic team medalist Luigi Samele (ITA) who held a 9-7 lead at the start of their second period. Samele brought his lead to 13-11 before Dershwitz replied with four straight to win the bout, 15-13.

Dershwitz took on four-time Senior World Champion Veniamin Reshetnikov (RUS) in the table of 32 and finished the first period with an 8-4 lead. Late in the second period, Reshetnikov tied the bout at 13 and scored again to come within a touch of the win. Dershwitz picked up a one-light score for a 14-14 tie and won the bout on the next exchange, 15-14.

Fencing World No. 1 Bongil Gu (KOR) for the first time in an individual event, Dershwitz led Gu, 8-7, after the first period. With the score tied at nine in the second, Gu scored four straight to take a 14-9 lead. Dershwitz scored twice before Gu finished the bout, 15-11.

Dershwitz’s 13th place finish allows him to remain the top American in the Adjusted Olympic Rankings going into the 2015 Senior World Championships in Moscow in July.

London Olympian Daryl Homer (Bronx, N.Y.) entered the Grand Prix is the ninth-ranked fencer in the world. Exempt from pools, Homer controlled the first period of his table of 64 bout against Riccardo Nuccio (ITA) and led his opponent, 10-6, in the second. Nuccio scored seven straight as he went on to steal the win, 15-12.

Following the Moscow Grand Prix, Dershwitz qualified for his third Senior World Team and Homer will fence at his sixth Senior Worlds. The two will be joined by 2012 Olympian Jeff Spear (Wynantskill, N.Y.) and 2015 Pan Am Team member Peter Souders (Silver Spring, Md.) Although Spear and Souders did not advance to the table of 64, they finish the 2015 Senior World Team qualifying period ranked third and fourth in the National Team Point Standings, respectively.

Ben Natanzon (Manalapan, N.J.), a 2014 Cadet World Team member, earned a top-64 result at his second senior international event outside the United States. Natanzon went 4-2 in the pool rounds on Friday and won his prelim DE rounds over Dimitrios Kafataridis (GRE) and Yemi Geoffrey Apithy (BEN) by 15-11 and 15-6 scores, respectively.

In the table of 64, Natanzon drew 2014 Senior World Champion Nikolay Kovalev (RUS) and lost their bout, 15-3.

Click here to view complete results.

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

Moscow Men’s Saber Grand Prix
1. Tiberiu Dolniceanu (ROU)
2. Matyas Szabo (GER)
3. Tamas Decsi (HUN)
3. Aron Szilagyi (HUN)
5. Bongil Gu (KOR)
6. Junghwan Kim (KOR)
7. Kamil Ibragimov (RUS)
8. Joseph Polossifakis (CAN)

13. Eli Dershwitz (Sherborn, Mass.)
33. Daryl Homer (Bronx, N.Y.)
53. Ben Natanzon (Manalapan, N.J.)
99. Dawson Sieradzky (Wayne, N.J.)
100. Jeff Spear (Wynantskill, N.Y.)
122. Gabe Armijo (San Diego, Calif.)
129. Thomas Kolasa (Princeton, N.J.)
151. Peter Souders (Silver Spring, Md.)
154. Evan Prochniak (Hudson, N.H.)
171. Marty Williams, Jr. (Danbury, Conn.)

Tag(s): News  Eli Dershwitz  Daryl Homer  Jeff Spear