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U.S. Men’s Saber Team Returns to No. 1 with Silver in Madrid

05/18/2016, 3:00am CDT
By Nicole Jomantas

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – The U.S. Men’s Saber Team concluded the 2015-16 World Cup series by regaining the No. 1 ranking in the world with a silver medal finish at the Madrid World Cup in Spain on Sunday.

The Americans ended their most successful season on the circuit with a fourth podium finish over the course of five World Cups, including gold medal wins in Tbilisi, Georgia and Warsaw Poland in October and February and a silver medal at the Budapest World Cup in November.

Seeded third in the tournament, Team USA earned a bye into the table of 16 where Eli Dershwitz (Sherborn, Mass.), Jeff Spear (Wynantskill, N.Y.) and Peter Souders (Silver Spring, Md.) took on Great Britain. The Americans won or tied eight of the nine bouts with Dershwitz at anchor to win the match, 45-33.

In the quarter-finals, Team USA dropped just two bouts against Italy, the 2015 Senior World Champions, as 2012 Olympian Daryl Homer (Bronx, N.Y.) anchored the team to a 45-35 victory.

The Americans fenced Russia, the reigning World Champions, in the semifinals in what would be a rematch of the gold medal final at the last World Cup in Warsaw.

Although Russia held a 10-5 lead after the first two bouts, Dershwitz, who recently qualified for his first Olympic Games in Rio, went on a 10-1 run against two-time World Team Champion Kamil Ibragimov to give Team USA a 15-11 lead. The win would be the first of three key victories for Dershwitz who psted a +14 indicator as he also took out 2015 Senior World Champion Alexey Yakimenko, 5-4, in the next rotation and 2012 Olympic bronze medalist Nikolay Kovalev, 5-1, in the setup bout. Homer, who will compete at his second Games in Rio, closed out as anchor with a 5-4 win over Yakimenko to give Team USA a 45-35 win.

Fencing Germany, the 2014 Senior World Champions, in the final bout, the Americans led, 30-27, after the first six bouts, but Germany claimed the final three wins to take gold, 45-35.

In the individual competition on Saturday, both Dershwitz and Spear, a 2012 Olympian, advanced to the table of 32.

Dershwitz, who was exempt from pools, defeated Spear’s younger brother, Will Spear (Wynantskill, N.Y.) by a 15-8 margin in the table of 64, but lost to Alin Badea (ROU), 15-14, in the 32.

Jeff Spear finished 6-0 in the pool rounds on Friday, giving up just six touches across six bouts to earn the 17th seed in the table of 64 as the top-ranked fencer after pools. Spear won his table of 64 bout against Remi Senegas (FRA), 15-6; however, he dropped his 32 bout to Vincent Anstett (FRA) who went on to win gold.

Homer was exempt from pools, but was eliminated in the direct elimination rounds after a 15-3 loss to Sanguk Oh (KOR) in the 64.

Click here to view complete team results.

Click here to view complete individual results.

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

Madrid Men’s Team Saber World Cup
1. Germany
2. USA
3. Hungary
4. Russia
5. Korea
6. France
7. Italy
8. Romania

Men’s Individual Saber World Cup
1. Vincent Anstett (FRA)
2. Sandro Bazadze (GEO)
3. Luca Curatoli (ITA)
3. Junghwan Kim (KOR)
5. Diego Occhiuzzi (ITA)
6. Aliaksandr Buikevich (BLR)
7. Seppe Van Holsbeke (BEL)
8. Sanguk Oh (KOR)

18. Eli Dershwitz (Sherborn, Mass.)
20. Jeff Spear (Wynantskill, N.Y.)
34. Daryl Homer (Bronx, N.Y.)
59. Will Spear (Wynantskill, N.Y.)
77. Philippe Guy (San Diego, Calif.)
83. Evan Prochniak (Hudson, N.H.)
96. Andrew Doddo (South Orange, N.J.)
105. Colin Campbell (Washington, D.C.)
139. Kamar Skeete (Duluth, Ga.)
162. Peter Souders (Silver Spring, Md.)
165. Deniz Berkay (Oak Beach, N.Y.)
168. Gabe Armijo (Phoenix, Ariz.)


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