Fencing Recap: UConn fencer takes men’s sabre gold at NEIFC Fall Invitational 

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Men’s Sabre 

Alan Fotiyev won all of his pool bouts, going 6-0 against Tufts’ Ian Kim, Vassar’s Nick Gayle, Brandeis’ Berwyn Lu, Northeastern’s Ethan Fisk, Sacred Heart’s Mark Sharkey and URI’s Gavin Hamel. He then ran the table in the direct elimination stage, beating Christopher Huang of Dartmouth in the Round of 32, David Fang of MIT in the Round of 16, Vassar’s Conor Travaglione in the quarterfinals, Berwyn Lu in semifinals and finally MIT’s Aaron Lu in the finals to claim UConn’s first-ever gold medal at the tournament. 

Andres Friebus lost only one bout in pools, beating MIT’s Joshua Sohn, Vassar’s Noah Rudnet, Darthmouth’s Shaochen Shi, Boston University’s Saman B-Razavi and URI’s Henry Raposo. He beat URI’s Josh Benros in the Round of 64, then fell to Tony Escueta of Brandeis. 

Ben Rosen took two wins in the pool round, defeating Christian Hahn of Vassar and Lenon Wong of Northeastern. He unfortunately lost a close bout to Brandeis’ Paul Sablone in his first direct elimination bout. 

Thomas George also took two wins in pools, beating Alex Cooper from Stony Brook and Carlos Ruiz from Sacred Heart. He was defeated by Walker Sorenson from UMass in the first round of direct elimination. 

Women’s Sabre 

Alex Boutin came out of the pool round with one win, defeating Kae Czesak of Vassar. In the Round of 64, she brought the score back from 9-14 to tied at 14 apiece, but tragically lost on the final touch against Smith’s Selin Kubali. 

Men’s Epee 

Sam Zelin came out of the pool round with two victories, taking wins off of Stony Brook’s ZeYu Chen and MIT’s Bryan Padilla. Unfortunately, he lost a close bout in the Round of 64 to Luis Luna Martinez. 

Brad Corrado came out of pools with a win over Dartmouth’s Rori Stuart. He was matched with eventual tournament winner Connor Kravit of Sacred Heart, and was defeated. 

Braden Migneault was unable to win a bout in the pool round, but secured the final spot in direct elimination after defeating Rori Stuart. He unfortunately fell to first seed Wilson Zhu of MIT. 

Phil Nicopoulous took two wins, defeating Stony Brook’s Jason Chen and Boston University’s Luis Luna Martinez. He tragically lost to UMass’ Seth Wyatt by one touch in the Round of 64. 

Chris Pedersen almost went undefeated in his pool, beating Dartmouth’s Nathanael Haile, UMass’ Seth Wyatt, Northeastern’s Huck Stepanyants, Brandeis’ Zachary Zhang and Stony Brook’s Alan Jin. He won his bout in the Round of 64 over ZeYu Chen, then lost to Brandeis’ Ben Wang. 

Lastly, Adin Jennings was able to beat three in his pools, Geoff Tobia of Tufts, Grisham Choudhary of Stony Brook and Francisco Alves Pereira of URI. He won his first direct elimination bout, beating Zachary Zhang, then fell to Vassar’s Jack Plumer in the Round of 32. 

Women’s Epee 

Grace McFadden won four bouts in the pool round, defeating Emilie Rose Parker of Vassar, Kendra Flanigan of Smith, Flannery Plum of Mt. Holyoke and Julie Rocklein of Sacred Heart. She got a bye, then lost to Ellie Chappuis of UMass in the Round of 32. 

Lela Romeo was unable to secure a victory in the pool round, then lost to Kendra Flanigan in the Round of 64. 

Men’s Foil 

Dan Schurk defeated Max Allison of Tufts in pools, then lost to MIT’s Richard Lin in the Round of 64. 

Eric Moore was unable to secure a win in pools, and fell to Patrick Liu of MIT in the Round of 64. 

Dalton Hawie won a bout in pools against Northeastern’s Andrew Meany, before losing to Dartmouth’s Darren Gu in direct eliminations. 

Joshua Liefeld won two bouts in pools, against URI’s Lucas Kisiel and Tufts’ Isaac Powers, then defeated URI’s Brendan Peck in the Round of 64 before falling to first seed Luke Ritchie of Brandeis. 

Women’s Foil 

Sneha Kumar won three of her bouts in pools, taking down Ari Schifman of Boston University, Grace Urmaza from Smith and Imuetiyan Eweka from UMass. She beat Rachael An of Smith in the Round of 64, then fell to MIT’s Amelia Schueppert. 

Julia Luscomb also won three bouts, beating Smith’s Katelyn Diaz, Dartmouth’s Sofia Goncalves and Shivani Allada of UMass, and defeated Clara Wong of Smith in the Round of 64 before falling to Alexandra McKee. 

Sally Dai was unable to win a bout in pools, almost beating Chenchen Cui of Sacred Heart. She was then eliminated by Jasmine Li of Dartmouth. 

Kathryn Atkinson won three bouts in the pool round with victories against Mary Ma from Dartmouth, Katherine Wu of Vassar and Jane Dawson of Smith. She defeated Ari Schifman, then lost to Amanda Loo in the Round of 32. 

Overall, the team had a good showing at its first big tournament of the year. Fotiyev’s win was the highlight of the day, making history for the UConn squad. As a whole, improvement is on everyone’s minds as the team looks toward the NEIFC Championship in February. 

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