Fencing started the new year with a successful showing at Sunday’s Penn State Invitational, with the squad going a combined 10-2 against some of the country’s toughest competition.
The Penn State Invitational was the year’s first meet for the Lions, whose last competitive appearance was an undefeated showing at the Columbia Invitational two months ago. The men’s team continued its undefeated streak on Sunday, going 6-0.
Meanwhile, the women’s squad posted a 4-2 showing, with the team’s two losses coming against North Carolina and host Penn State.
The first match for the women’s squad was against North Carolina and ended with a close 13-14 loss. Sabre posted the strongest showing with a 6-3 record, while épée also had a positive 5-4 record. Ultimately, a largely absent women’s foil squad resulted in six forfeited bouts, tipping the scale in North Carolina’s favor.
In the day’s later matches, the women’s squad captured important victories against conference foes Yale and Penn, winning 15-12 and 14-13, respectively. Both of these victories were reliant on the strength of the sabre and épée teams, many of whose members even filled in for missing foilists.
The men’s squad also began the meet with a match against North Carolina, winning 17-10. In their second and third matches, the men’s squad won decisively against Haverford and Yale, losing only seven bouts in the process. The toughest test of the day came in the final match against conference foes Penn, where the men eked out a 14-13 victory—a result that will be sure to generate confidence before next month’s Ivy League Championships.
The Light Blue will next take to the strip in a week’s time at the St. John’s Invitational. There, the Lions will face Penn State once again alongside other main NCAA competitors, such as Notre Dame, Ohio State, St. John’s, and Harvard.