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Farrah Lee-Elabd Wins First Junior World Cup Medal in Burgos

02/03/2016, 7:15pm CST
By Nicole Jomantas

Farrah Lee-Elabd (far right) won bronze in Burgos.

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Seventeen-year-old Farrah Lee-Elabd (San Antonio, Texas) broke through the Junior World Cup circuit with her first bronze medal World Cup win on Saturday when she placed third in Burgos, Spain.

Lee-Elabd, who is aiming to qualify for her first Junior World Team, defeated many of the best women’s epee fencers under 20-years-old to reach the podium.

Seeded 20th out of pools, Lee-Elabd defeated Justin Praz (SUI), 15-7, in the table of 32 and upset 2014 Junior World team medalist Amanda Sirico (Bowie, Md.), 15-4, in the 64.

After a 10-7 win over Irina Okhotnikova (RUS) in the 32, Lee-Elabd defeated Andrea Vittoria Rizzi (ITA), 15-8, in the 16.

In the quarter-finals, Lee-Elabd took out 2015 Junior World medalist Nadine Stahlberg (GER), defeating the reigning Junior World No. 1 by a score of 15-14.

Lee-Elabd finished with a bronze medal after her only loss of the day came to Daria Filina (RUS), 15-8, in the semis. Filina would go on to win gold – her fourth Junior World Cup medal of the season.

After winning bronze, Lee-Elabd shot up from No. 13 to No. 7 in the Junior National Team Point Standings with the top four earning positions on the 2016 Junior World Championship Team. Lee-Elabd remains in contention for Team USA with one qualifying junior tournament remaining – the USA Fencing Junior Olympic Championships in Cleveland from Feb. 12-15.

A bronze medalist at the Dijon World Cup last month, Kasia Nixon (Los Angeles, Calif.) placed 13th in Burgos – a finish which allowed the 2014 Cadet World medalist to retain her No. 1 national ranking and mathematically lock her position on the Junior World Team.

Both the No. 2 and No. 3 positions also have been solidified by Sirico and 2014 Cadet World Team member Gigi Vierheller (Houston, Texas).

In order to qualify for Team USA, Lee-Elabd will have to leapfrog three fencers who are currently ranked fourth, fifth and sixth: 2014 Junior Olympic Champion Tatijana Stewart (Ogden, Utah), 2015 Cadet World Team member Barbara VanBenthuysen (The Woodlands, Texas) and 2015 Junior World Team member Madeline Antekeier (Houston, Texas).

Stewart is seeking to qualify for both the Cadet and Junior World Teams as her No. 1 ranking in the cadet standings will hold through the selection process, guaranteeing her a spot on the Cadet World Team where she will be joined by No. 2 Kenya Plenty (New York City, N.Y.) while the third position on the squad will be fought out in Cleveland.

On Sunday, Nixon, Sirico, Vierheller and VanBenthuysen fenced in the team tournament.

Seeded third in the event, Team USA defeated Ukraine, 45-41, in the table of 16 and Finland, 45-24, in the quarter-finals.

Team USA narrowly missed the finals after a 26-24 loss to Italy and dropped the bronze medal match, 45-27, and finished in fourth place.

Click here to view complete results.

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

Burgos Women’s Individual Epee Junior World Cup
1. Daria Filina (RUS)
2. Alexandra Louis Marie (FRA)
3. Alice Clerici (ITA)
3. Farrah Lee-Elabd (San Antonio, Texas)
5. Nadine Stahlberg (GER)
6. Federica Isola (ITA)
7. Paula Schmidl (AUT)
8. Ekaterina Tarasova (RUS)

13. Kasia Nixon (Los Angeles, Calif.)
36. Greta Candreva (Katonah, N.Y.)
37. Barbara VanBenthuysen (The Woodlands, Texas)
43. Amanda Sirico (Bowie, Md.)
50. Kenya Plenty (New York, N.Y.)
52. Dasha Yefremenko (Manalapan, N.J.)
54. Sofia Komar (Laurence Harbor, N.J.)
58. Karolina Nixon (Los Angeles, Calif.)
67. Saanchi Kukadia (Manhasset, N.Y.)
91. Gigi Vierheller (Houston, Texas)
100. Tatijana Stewart (Ogden, Utah)

Burgos Women’s Team Epee Junior Word Cup
1. Italy
2. Egypt
3. Russia
4. USA
5. Germany
6. Finland
7. Canada
8. Estonia 

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