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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Fencing Notebook

Published: December 2, 2005
Section: Sports

On November 19th, the Brandeis Mens and Womens fencing teams traveled to Brown University to participate in the Northeast Conference Meet, and both sides were able to put on quite a show. The Mens team came away with four victories, topping UMass, Tufts, Boston University, and the University of New Hampshire. The Women were able to best those four teams plus Wellesley and Smith, to emerge with six wins. Neither side suffered a loss.

Unlike the Judges previous meet, in which each fencer competed as an individual, the format for this meet had each bout count towards a total team score. The change enabled the Judges to display their consistency as a team by doing well in all three events – the foil, epee, and saber.

Both the Men and Lady Judges were especially impressive in the foil, with the men compiling a 29-7 record, and the women going 46-8. The mens team was particularly dominant against UNH, winning twenty of twenty-seven bouts, while the women were able to amass twenty victories against three of their opponents, including a stellar 23-4 record against Boston University.

Coach William Shipman, now in his twenty-fifth year heading the team, was happy with the result. The Northeast Conference meet went quite well overall, he said. We got to see a lot of our new fencers compete in a fairly low stress environment, and nearly all of them did well. Womens foil was very impressive, as was our young womens epee team and mens foil.

Even though Brandeis was competing as a complete team, in a sport like fencing the team cannot succeed without individual results. On the mens side, the two team captains turned in excellent performances. Brendan Doris-Pierce 07 managed five victories in six matches, and his counterpart Jeremy Simpson 06 did him one better by going undefeated throughout the meet. While it was the captains that set the bar for the mens side, the women were propelled by impressive showings from a pair of freshmen. Caitlin Kozel 09 won twelve bouts while losing only four, and Kirsten Heinz 09 came away with fourteen wins in eighteen matches. Coach Shipman called this years freshman class large and experienced and, for now it seems that his wish for the freshmen to step right in and do well is going to be granted.

Were optimistic that this years team can compete well with virtually every team on our schedule. We are deeper top to bottom of both mens and womens lineup than we have ever been, especially with the women, said Coach Shipman. But we do not have a lot of experience at some positions, so we will have to fence well and consistently to reach our team and individual goals.

On Sunday, December 4th, the Judges will take on fencers from Brown, Vassar, Yale, and St. Johns in the Gosman Sports Complex. The meet begins at 9:00 AM, and should be a tight one, as Brown, Yale, and St. Johns consistently field strong teams.