Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern


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Fencing: Third round’s the charm for Northwestern at Tufts Invitational

One+fencer+crouches+to+hit+another+fencer+in+a+large+room+with+a+curved+roof.
Daily file photo by Seeger Gray
Two fencers square off in a match.

It took Northwestern a couple of rounds to shake off the New Year’s dust at Sunday’s Tufts Invitational. 

The now-No. 10 Wildcats started with a rough 21-6 loss against now-No.9 Cornell, followed by a 14-13 defeat to Wellesley. 

“Our energy to start the day wasn’t great, and there’s potential reasons and there are excuses and I’m not really interested in them, quite frankly,” coach Zach Moss said. 

Flight delays shifted NU’s trip off course from the get-go. The ‘Cats arrived at their hotel in Massachusetts after midnight on Sunday — a less-than-ideal situation the night before a morning tournament.

Moss said the group didn’t find its sharpness early on.

“From a fencing perspective, we dropped some bouts that, if we had come out a little sharper and a little higher energy, I think would have gone our way,” Moss said.

But, the ‘Cats still found victories in the first two individual rounds. Junior épéeist Hanna Lipthay went 4-2 in bouts, triumphing in a complete pivot from her 2-4 Tufts Invitational run the previous year. 

Lipthay said last season’s event weighed on her mind as she departed for Massachusetts this weekend.

“I was a little bit afraid to come back here again,” Lipthay said. “And so I started off slow, I didn’t fence out in my first bout, but after that, my teammates had me, put me together emotionally, and I managed to turn it around. ”

The ‘Cats finally got their spark back in their last matchup of the tournament, nabbing a jubilant 21-6 victory against Tufts. Behind an 8-1 épée win, the ‘Cats went 7-2 and 6-3 respectively in the saber and foil categories. 

“The team was clicking in all three weapons and the energy was really great, they were being loud and very hype — that’s who we are, and that’s who we want to be,” Moss said. ”Coming off winter break, sometimes it takes us a second to find that, and so it was really good to bring that energy and feel the team really clicking.”

The ‘Cats will head to the City of Brotherly Love next weekend for the Philadelphia Invitational, where they’ll face off against No. 4 Duke, No. 17 Yale, No. 12 Penn, NJIT and Drew. 

“I definitely want to go into Philly with the same mindset as we had last night,” Lipthay said. “It’s gonna be a tougher one. They’re gonna be really good teams, but if we can stick together and stay calm, I think we can succeed.”

Email: @[email protected] 

Twitter: @roselcarlson

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