Fencing: Three Wildcats to compete at Junior Olympic Championships

Three+Northwestern+freshmen+will+represent+the+team+at+the+USFA+Junior+Olympic+Championships.+It%E2%80%99ll+be+a+good+opportunity+to+show+themselves+against+some+of+the+stronger+other+junior+fencers+in+the+country%2C%E2%80%9D+coach+Laurie+Schiller+said.

Daily file photo by Rafi Letzter

Three Northwestern freshmen will represent the team at the USFA Junior Olympic Championships. “It’ll be a good opportunity to show themselves against some of the stronger other junior fencers in the country,” coach Laurie Schiller said.

Alex Lederman, Reporter

Northwestern (34-9) will send three fencers to the USFA Junior Olympic Championships in Portland, Ore., this weekend.

“It’ll be a good opportunity to show themselves against some of the stronger other junior fencers in the country,” coach Laurie Schiller said.

Although a number of Schiller’s fencers under 21 years old earned enough points in junior national tournaments to qualify for this weekend’s events, injuries have limited the Wildcats to just three freshmen in the competition — foil Stephanie Chan, sabre Cindy Oh and foil Stella Pointeau.

Chan, from Cupertino, Calif., holds a 37-14 record in her rookie season. Although Oh hails from the opposite end of the country, calling Allendale, N.J., home, her role with the team has been equally critical. Following her contributions to the two-time New Jersey State team champions, she has put up a 54-21 record for NU.

“I think they’re gonna do well,” Schiller said. “Cindy and Stephanie — they both have really good experience in this competition.”

Pointeau, on the other hand, comes from abroad and has never competed at these national championships. That’s not to say she didn’t see success in France, though. She was a five-time French National Championship medalist and snatched first place at the Junior French National Championship in 2012. The foil currently holds a 16-1 record for the Cats.

“She hasn’t done this particular competition before,” Schiller said, “so it’s hard to say how she might do.”

After this tournament, the Cats will have a two-week break before postseason play begins at the start of a busy next month. First, the team will have the Conference Championships, then regionals and lastly the NCAA Championship. Coach Schiller said he has viewed all his team’s matchups up to this point as preparation for the postseason, and he expects a strong showing from his squad.

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