Fencing: Wildcats impress in individual national tournament
January 12, 2017
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Northwestern visited the USA Fencing North American Cup over the weekend in one of the team’s last tuneups before the heart of the regular season begins.
Eleven Wildcats competed as individuals in the tournament, which was held in Columbus, Ohio. Several NU fencers had impressive showings, headlined by freshman Pauline Hamilton who finished third in the junior women’s épée event.
“Pauline Hamilton was outstanding,” coach Zach Moss said. “Finishing third is really, really impressive, so that was totally the standout performance we had.”
Hamilton’s performance earned her the highest finish she’s had this season. She said she’s consistently finished in the top eight, but had trouble advancing from there.
“My personal goal is to make it to NCAAs,” Hamilton said. “My coaches and I were working on my balance, so I hope to improve on that, and then I think the results will follow.”
Moss mentioned several other Cats who had notable performances over the weekend. Freshman Amy Jia finished 30th in the junior women’s foil competition, while junior Katie Van Riper finished 53rd in the Division I women’s épée competition.
Moss said he was especially pleased with Van Riper’s performance.
“It’s one of the best results she’s ever had,” Moss said.
Sophomore Ella Lombard finished 77th in junior women’s épée, junior Sacha Bazzal finished 68th in Division I women’s sabre and sophomore Yvonne Chart finished 45th in Division I women’s foil.
Although the event won’t count for NU’s record, Moss said it gave the team a chance to assess itself and that he was pleased with the results.
“It was effectively an exhibition event for us in the fact that it doesn’t count for our season, so it’s a lot of ‘let’s see where we’re at, let’s evaluate as we move into the heart of our college season competitively,’” Moss said. “In terms of that, it was really successful for the people who went.”