March 26, 2010
BOSTON, Mass. – After two days of fencing at Harvard’s Gordon Track Center, the Notre Dame Fighting Irish fencing team has found itself deep in the thicket of a three-team national title race. With women’s fencing now in the books, the Irish enter the final two days of fencing with 91 points, second only to the 92 wins turned in by St. John’s. Penn State is right behind the Irish, currently sitting in third place with 90 points.
On Friday afternoon, the final women’s fencing bouts took place and sophomore Courtney Hurley (San Antonio, Texas) claimed a bronze medal and the Irish had five All-America finishes.
In women’s sabre both Sarah Borrmann (Beaverton, Ore.) and Eileen Hassett (Beaverton, Ore.) earned second team All-America honors. Borrmann just missed the opportunity to fence for a medal as her 17 wins put her in fifth place (Dagmara Wozniak of St. John’s finished in fourth place with 18 wins). With the fifth place showing, Borrmann earned All-America status for the second time in three seasons, having won the championship as a freshman in 2008. One of her biggest wins of the day came against Wozniak. Borrmann trailed Wozniak 4-2, but rattled off the next three touches to claim the come from behind win in round robin action. Hassett recorded another steady performance at the NCAA championships, notching 16 wins and a +18 indicator to finish seventh. It marked her third consecutive second team All-America showing, having finished fifth in 2008 and sixth in 2009.
In epee, sophomore Courtney Hurley (San Antonio, Texas) won Notre Dame’s lone medal of the day by finishing tied for third with Anastasia Ferdman of Penn State, marking the second consecutive year Hurley claimed a bronze medal at the NCAA Championships. After round robin play, Hurley was in third with 19 wins and a +32 indicator, allowing her to advance to one of the women’s epee semifinal bouts where she fell to eventual champion Margherita Guzzi, 15-11. Hurley had been leading 6-3 at the end of the first period. Guzzi then tied it up at 7-7 and the competitors traded touches until it was 11-11 at the end of the second period. But then Guzzi pulled away to advance to the championship bout where she downed Noam Mills of Harvard,15-10. In pool play, Hurley had impressive wins over Mills in sudden death, 3-2, and Guzzi, 5-2.
Kelley Hurley (San Antonio, Texas) capped off her illustrious Irish career with her third All-American finish in four seasons as she earned second team honors by finishing sixth. She recorded 17 wins and had a +30 indicator. Hurley’s previous All-American honors came when she finished second overall as a freshman and claimed the championship as a sophomore.
Hayley Reese (Crestwood, Ky.) was Notre Dame’s fifth All-American. She notched a 16-7 record in two days of round robin play and a +38 indicator. It was also her third All-America honor of the past three years, having achieved third team honors as a freshman and finishing second overall last season.
Sophomore Darsie Malynn (Grapevine, Texas) finished 23rd with six wins but she did record one win each against Penn State, St. John’s and Harvard to help the Notre Dame cause.
Men’s round robin play begins tomorrow, March 27 and will conclude on March 28. Following the completion of the round robin rounds, the top-four finishers in each men’s weapon will fence simultaneous semifinal 15-touch bouts, with the winners fencing to determine the champion and the losers being awarded a tie for third place. An institution’s place in the championship will be based on points earned by each individual win.
Check back with UND.com for a complete recap of the third day of the championships. Fans can also follow the Irish by accessing live results at http://www.prisedefer.com/NCAA or following live video streaming of tomorrow’s action through www.collegefencing360.com.
Team Standings (Day 2)1. St. John's University2. Notre Dame3. Penn State4. Princeton University5. Harvard University6. Columbia/Barnard7. Ohio State University8. Northwestern University9. Temple University10. Duke University11. Pennsylvania12. Stanford University12. U.S. Air Force Academy14. Cornell University15. Yale University16. U.C. San Diego16. Wayne State University18. Brown University19. Boston College20. Cal Tech