Jan. 24, 2007
COLUMBUS, Ohio - After an impressive 16-1 record at the Notre Dame Duals last weekend, the Ohio State fencing team goes on the road again Sunday at New York University for the NYU Duals. The NYU Duals will host several of the nation's fencing powerhouses, including Yale, St. John's, Wayne State, Northwestern, Columbia, Stevens Tech and Notre Dame.
The Buckeyes enter the competition ranked No. 2 on the men's side and No. 6 on the women's side. At Notre Dame last weekend, the men went 9-0, including a 14-13 win over the No. 5 Fighting Irish, while the women went 7-1 with a narrow 14-13 loss to UND.
Last season at the NYU Duals, the No. 1-ranked men's team went 5-0, including three wins over Top-10 ranked competition. Key returners from last year's competition include sophomore Mikhail Momtselidze in sabre, sophomore Andras Horanyi in foil, junior Siobhan Byrne in sabre and junior Eileen Grench in sabre.
The NYU Duals finish off a critical three-week stretch for the Ohio State fencing squad. Beginning with the North American Cup held in Columbus Jan. 12-15, and continuing last week at the Notre Dame Duals, the Buckeyes have enjoyed exceptional individual performances as well as solid team play during the stretch.
A LOOK AT THE COMPETITION Yale recorded a 2-2 record at the Brandeis Invitational Dec. 3, including victories over Boston College and MIT. The Bulldogs are led by their men's foil team, which won 24 of 36 matches at the Brandeis Invitational.
St. John's is once again among the nation's elite, with both men's and women's teams posting a 5-0 record at the Brandeis Invitational. Leading the way for the Red Storm is senior Benjamin Bratton in epee and sophomore Monika Golebiewski in foil. Wayne State fenced at the Notre Dame Duals last weekend, with the women's squad finishing with a 5-3 record, while the men posted a 3-6 mark. In women's epee, senior Anna Garina and junior Justyna Konczalska paced the Warriors last weekend, each finishing with 18-2 records.
Notre Dame matched the Buckeyes record of 16-1 at last weekend's Notre Dame Duals. The No. 4-ranked Fighting Irish women beat Ohio State 14-13 to go undefeated while the No. 5-ranked men's squad was on the losing end of a 14-13 decision with the Buckeyes.
The No. 6-ranked Northwestern women went 5-1 at the Haverford Invitational Jan. 20, losing only to No. 8-ranked Penn. NU's five wins improved its season record to 16-1 and moved head coach Laurie Schiller to within one win of 900 (899-397).
Columbia last competed at the NAC in Richmond, Va in Dec. The Lions fencing squad placed five fencers in the Top-20, including women's epee fencers Alexie Rubin, Morgan Midgley and Oriana Isaacson.
Stevens Tech will take to the strip this weekend after posting a 3-1 record last weekend at the Stevens Invitational. Junior Matt Paragano went 12-0 in sabre for the Ducks.
LAST WEEKEND AT THE NOTRE DAME DUALS Ohio State proved its elite status on the national stage last weekend at the Notre Dame Duals. The Buckeyes went 16-1 on the weekend, the sole loss coming at the hands of the Notre Dame women on a 14-13 decision. The No. 2-ranked men's team went undefeated, posting victories over No. 5 Notre Dame and No. 8 Stanford. Keyed by the clutch performances of junior Will Jeter and sophomore Jason Pryor, Ohio State edged the Fighting Irish men in the last two bouts of competition to take a decisive 14-13 win. The women's team, in addition to downing No. 10-ranked Stanford 19-8, went 7-1 in competition.
The duals renewed the rivalry between the Buckeyes and Fighting Irish. In 2004, the Buckeyes won the national title, topping third-place Notre Dame by 41 points. In 2005 the Fighting Irish returned the favor, staging a dramatic comeback on the final day of competition to edge the Buckeyes by two points.
LOOKING AHEAD TO THE REST OF THE SEASON Following the New York University Duals the Buckeyes return home for a week before hosting the Ohio State Duals Feb. 10. Also on the docket are the Northwestern Duals, held on the 24th. After that, Ohio State will head to the Midwest Conference Championships, where the Buckeyes aim to lock up their fourth-consecutive title. From there, the Buckeyes will finish off the collegiate season at the NCAA Championships in search of a national championship.
RECAPPING THE NORTH AMERICAN CUP A total of 13 Buckeyes placed in the Top 20 at the North American Cup Jan. 12-15, one of the nation's elite fencing tournaments with nearly 3,000 participants, which wrapped after four days of competition at the Columbus Convention Center. Among the standouts for the Scarlet and Gray was Alexandra Obrazcova who tied for third in the women's epee, her best finish in an NAC event. Mike Momtselidze also recorded a career-high finish with a second overall finish in the men's sabre.
Sophomore Andras Horanyi also placed in the Top 10, coming in ninth in the foil. Ohio State volunteer assistant coach Hanna Thompson won her second-consecutive NAC competition in the women's foil. Three other former OSU All-Americans and current volunteer assistant coaches also had Top 5 finishes, including three-time NCAA champion Boaz Ellis (2004-06), who tied for third in men's foil, three-time All-American Denis Tolkachev (2004-06), who placed fifth in men's epee and three-time NCAA champion Adam Crompton (2003-06), who placed fifth in men's sabre.
RECAP OF THE 2006 SEASON The 2005-06 campaign was yet another stellar year for Ohio State fencing. The men's team went 22-0 in regular season competition while the women's squad recorded a 19-3 mark, bringing the combined team mark to a remarkable 41-3. At the Midwest Conference Championships, Ohio State swept the competition, capturing both men's and women's titles and defeating second place Notre Dame by 65 points. Seniors Boaz Ellis and Adam Crompton capped their collegiate careers with individual national titles at the NCAA Championships, steering Ohio State to an overall third place finish. Ellis and Crompton, along with Andras Horanyi, Denis Tolkachev, Jason Rogers and Kaela Brendler, took first-team All American honors.
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