STATE COLLEGE, Pa. –
On Saturday, Temple's fencing team traveled to State College for the second time this season for the Penn State Invitational, where the Owls finished with a 3-2 record on the day.
After a long winter break and only a few days to prepare for the invitational, the Owls faced tough competition from three teams that finished in the top 10 at the 2012 NCAA Championships, including Columbia, Duke and host Penn State.
The day began with a grueling match with Columbia University where Temple suffered its first loss of the season, losing 23-4.
“We fought hard but just couldn't win the bouts we needed to win,” head coach Nikki Franke
The Owls were able to overcome the tough loss to Columbia by dominating its next match, defeating Drew, 26-1.
The victory was led by the sabre and epee squads, which went undefeated.
Juniors Chantal Montrose
and Andrea Haley
, along with freshmen Jessica Hall
and Demi Antipas
all recorded perfect 3-0 records in the match. Junior Kim Howell and freshman Petra Kahn also performed well, going undefeated at 2-0, while freshman Olivia Wynn
finished 2-1 and Emily Dodson
Temple followed up with a strong performance against Top 10 Duke, winning, 16-11.
The foil squad excelled with an 8-1 record, led by senior Mikayla Varadi
and freshman Fatima Largaespada
who were undefeated. The sabre squad went 5-4 with both Tiki Kastor
and Lauren Rangel-Friedman
Thanks to a perfect 9-0 score by the Foil squad, the Owls won their fourth match of the day against UNC by a score of 18-9.
Foilists Mikayla Varadi
and Epiphany Georges
both finished with 3-0 records while sabre fencers Tiki Kastor
(2-0) and Tasia Ford
(1-0) also showed solid performances. The epee squad was led by junior Kim Howell who went 2-1.
The day concluded against the Top 10 Penn State Nittany Lions, where the Owls struggled to win several close bouts, but lost, 20-7. Senior Jill Bratton
led the Owls with a solid performance finishing 2-1 in epee.
“It was a tough day for us, but we saw some outstanding performances from several of our fencers which is very promising,” Franke said. “We strive to fence the best competition possible so that we are constantly challenged—That is how we will continue to improve.”
The Owls, who are now 7-2 on the season, will now get back to work preparing for their next meet, the Philadelphia Invitational, which they will host on Jan. 26 at Temple's Student Pavilion.