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Alexander Massialas to Fence for an Olympic Medal Tonight

08/07/2016, 2:00pm CDT
By Nicole Jomantas

Alexander Massialas celebrates his final touch against Giorgio Avola (ITA). Photo Credit: Serge Timacheff / FIE / FencingPhotos.com

(Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – Two-time Olympian Alexander Massialas (San Francisco, Calif.) advanced to the semifinals on Sunday in the men’s foil event.

The 22-year-old will fence Richard Kruse (GBR) in the semis at 4:30 p.m. local time (Eastern +1) with the winner taking on Timur Safin (RUS) or Daniele Garozzo (ITA).

The bout will be televised on MSNBC live.

Massialas could become the first U.S. man to win an individual medal at the Olympic Games since Peter Westbrook (New York City, N.Y.) won bronze in 1984.

Massialas defeated Mohamed Essam (EGY), 15-7, in the table of 32 and 2013 Senior World silver medalist Artur Akhmatkhuzin (RUS), 15-9, in the 16 after the Russian’s 15-13 win over 2013 Senior World Champion Miles Chamley-Watson (New York City, N.Y.)

In the quarter-finals, 2012 Olympic Team Champion Giorgio Avola (ITA) scored eight straight to build a 14-8 lead against Massialas who fought back to steal the bout back, 15-14.

“This is the biggest stage where it’s my time to shine. So I just believed every step of the way, every second, every touch that I could actually do it, one by one. Just believe in yourself and never give up,” Massialas said. “I just fought my hardest and I left it all out on the strip. Now I have two more bouts ahead of me, win or lose. I have to fence for a gold or bronze medal. I just have to put my head down and grind and beat whoever’s in front of me.

Massialas will take on Kruse in the semifinals following the British fencer’s 15-13 upset of World No. 4

“Gerek’s an amazing fencer in his own right. It would have been awesome to go against my teammate in the semis,” Massialas said. “Unfortunately, he came up short against Richard Kruse, but hopefully I can bring some hardware back from my club and my teammates. Whatever I did so far, it’s amazing, but my work’s not done. Until I get a medal at the end of the day, I’m not satisfied.”

The winners of the semis will fence at 5:45 p.m. local time. The bronze medal final will be held at 5:15 p.m. local time.

Tag(s): News  Alexander Massialas