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Ever Marinelli Wins First Junior NAC Title in Kansas City

11/16/2017, 8:15pm CST
By Nicole Jomantas

Junior women's foil finalists.

(Colorado Springs, Colo.) – Ranked 17th in the nation, 15-year-old Ever Marinelli (San Francisco, Calif.) won her first Junior North American Cup title on Saturday when she took the foil gold at the November NAC Nourished by ProteinHouse in Kansas City.

One of the top cadet fencers in the country, Marinelli didn’t drop a bout to her older opponents all day, finishing in a tie for second out of pools with a 6-0 record to earn a bye into the table of 128.

Marinelli defeated Jessica Jia (CAN), 15-11, in her opening direct elimination bout and followed with wins over Allison Moore (Sunnyvale, Calif), 15-4, and Jessica Guo (CAN), 15-11, to advance to the table of 16 where she defeated Xiao-Qing Tsai (TPE), 15-9.

In her closest bout of the day, Marinelli secured a position in the semifinals when she bested 2017 Cadet World Team member May Tieu (Belle Mead, N.J.), 15-12.

Marinelli won her next bout against Isabella Zuzulo (Newtown, Pa.), 15-10, and defeated Nicole Wong (SIN), 15-9, to claim gold.

In the cadet men’s foil event, Kenji Bravo (San Francisco, Calif.) entered the event as the top seed and didn’t disappoint as he went on to win his second straight NAC title, following his gold at the October event in Anaheim.

Tied for second out of pools, Bravo held his first four opponents to single digit scores, defeating William Thai (Hacienda Heights, Calif.), 15-5, in the table of 128 and taking 15-7 wins over Carter Hodges (Eastchester, N.Y.) and Justin Vogler (Portland, Ore.) to make the top eight.

Bravo earned his position in the gold medal final after wins in his next two bouts against James Chen (Weston, Conn.), 15-7, and Allan Ding (Dover, Mass.), 15-8.

Bravo took on Ashton Daniel (Cupertino, Calif.), the No. 1 seed in the DEs, in the gold medal final and won the bout, 15-10.

After earning a top-eight finish at the Junior Olympics in February, Sydney Hirsch (Woodbridge, Conn.) won her first NAC title, taking gold in the cadet women’s saber competition.

Hirsch entered the NAC as the top seed and went undefeated at 6-0 in the pool rounds. She took a pair of dominant wins in the opening DE rounds, defeating Alexandra Weinberg (Bernardsville, N.J.) and Ella Greenbaum (Atlanta, Ga.) by 15-6 and 15-7 scores, respectively.

She went on to win bouts against Ilsa Hoffman (Red Hook, N.Y.), 15-12, and Monir Fahri (South San Francisco, Calif.), 15-7, to advance to the quarter-finals where she defeated Chiara Di Perna (CAN), 15-11.

In the medal rounds, Hirsch would fence two of her closest bouts of the day, winning both the semis and finals by 15-12 scores over Amit Hanadari-Levy (Rockville, Md.) and Keona Moya (El Dorado Hills, Calif.)

The Y14 women’s epee event would come down to the top two fencers in the nation dueling for the title with No. 1 Jessica Lin (Basking Ridge, N.J.) fencing No. 2 Jaclyn Khrol (Brooklyn, N.Y.) for gold after earning the top two seeds in the DE table.

The reigning Division II National Champion, Lin dominated her early bouts, defeating Grace Hu (CAN), 15-5; Isabella Wolf (Longmont, Colo.), 15-7; and Pilar Maldonado (San Antonio, Texas), 15-8 before shutting out Diane Kim (Palisades Park, N.J.), 15-0, in the quarter-finals.

After a 15-10 win over Nishta Boys (San Antonio, Texas) in the semifinal, Lin edged Khrol, 15-14, to take gold.

Andrew Gefell (Farmington, N.Y.) had a breakthrough result in the Y14 men’s saber event where he reached the finals on the NAC circuit for the first time as a Y14 fencer.

Ranked 20th in the nation at the start of the weekend, Gefell posted a shutout over Nicholas Busam (Indianapolis, Ind.) in his first DE bout, but Gefell’s run nearly came to an end in the 64 where he squeaked out a 15-14 win over Gian Dhingra (Laguna Hills, Calif.)

Gefell advanced to the quarters with victories against Lysander Denner (Greenwich, Conn.) and Nash Yang (Palo Alto, Calif.) by 15-10 and 15-9 scores, respectively.

Gefell won a pair of nailbiters over Camden Droz (Davie, Fla.), the top Y14 fencer in the nation, and the top seed in the DEs, Connor Liang (San Diego, Calif.), by 15-13 and 15-14 scores, respectively.

In the finals, Gefell won his bout against Kirk Chayevsky (Alpharetta, Ga.), 15-7, to take his first NAC gold.

Click here to view complete results.

Top eight and results are as follows:

Junior Women’s Foil
1. Ever Marinelli (San Francisco, Calif.)
2. Nicole Wong (SIN)
3. Lauren Scruggs (Ozone Park, N.Y.)
3. Isabella Zuzulo (Newtown, Pa.)
5. Morgan Lee (Woodmere, N.Y.)
6T. Delphine DeVore (Westport, Conn.)
6T. Maia Weintraub (Philadelphia, Pa.)
8. May Tieu (Belle Mead, N.J.)

Cadet Men’s Foil
1. Kenji Bravo (San Francisco, Calif.)
2. Ashton Daniel (Cupertino, Calif.)
3. Chase Emmer (Morristown, N.J.)
3. Allan Ding (Dover, Mass.)
5. Andrew Zheng (Jericho, N.Y.)
6. James Chen (Weston, Conn.)
7. Cameron Bermender (Petaluma, Calif.)
8. Eric Yu (Encino, Calif.)

Cadet Women’s Saber
1. Sydney Hirsch (Woodbridge, Conn.)
2. Keona Moya (El Dorado Hills, Calif.)
3. Joy Yun (Portland, Ore.)
3. Amit Hanadari-Levy (Rockville, Md.)
5. Chloe Gouhin (Blacklick, Ohio)
6. Vera Kong (Irvine, Calif.)
7. Nithya Guthikonda (Peachtree, Ga.)
8. Chiara Di Perna (CAN)

Y14 Women’s Epee
1. Jessica Lin (Basking Ridge, N.J.)
2. Jaclyn Khrol (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
3. Nishta Boys (San Antonio, Texas)
3. Hadley Husisian (Oakton, Va.)
5. Madeline Janowski (Atlanta, Ga.)
6. Caralina Khrol (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
7. Emily Sumrall (The Woodlands, Texas)
8. Diane Kim (Palisades Park, N.J.)

Y14 Men’s Saber
1. Andrew Gefell (Farmington, N.Y.)
2. Kirk Chayevsky (Alpharetta, Ga.)
3. Connor Liang (San Diego, Calif.)
3. Kyle Lee (Rockville, Md.)
5. Colby Harley (Alpharetta, Ga.)
6. Camden Droz (Davie, Fla.)
7. Minwook Kim (KOR)
8. Jaden Callahan (Carlsbad, Calif.)

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