January 27, 1999

Irish Preview: The Irish are at home this weekend for two days of dual meets. This Saturday and Sunday, January 30-31, Notre Dame fencing and the Joyce Center Field House will serve as host to Case Western Reserve, Illinois-Chicago, Cleveland State, Detroit, Lawrence, Michigan, Michigan State, Northwestern, Ohio State, Purdue, Tri-State and Wayne State. The Irish women look forward to a tough contest with the ninth-ranked Ohio State women’s team. The Irish have been a perennial fencing power in the Midwest, capturing the past seven Midwestern combined team championships. The last Irish loss to a Midwestern opponent came in 1996 when Wayne State defeated the Irish men 16-11. With coach Yves Auriol career record at 387-22 (.946), the 13th Irish win this weekend will give Auriol his 400th coaching victory.

Irish Review: The Irish men fenced six of the top ten teams in the country, while the Irish women did battle with five of the top ten ranked teams. At State College, Pa., on January 23, the Irish fenced four-time defending NCAA champion Penn State, Haverford, Pennsylvania and Stanford. Both the men’s and women’s squads went 3-1 on the day with their lone loss coming from the top rated Nittany Lions. On January 24, the Irish were in New York, N.Y., to take on NYU, St. John’s and Columbia. The Irish men went undefeated on the day, while the women registered a 2-1 mark, suffering a loss to Columbia. The loss to Columbia marks the first time since 1993 that the Irish women have had two losses in the same season. During the past five seasons (1994-98) the Irish women have lost only three times in regular season competition.

The Irish men were paced by a strong sabre squad. It was a trio of sabremen led by freshman Gabor Szelle (Budapest, Hungary) who was 19-1 on the weekend, senior captain and 1998 NCAA sabre champion Luke LaValle (New York, N.Y.) contributed 14 wins along with four losses and freshman Andre Crompton (Irvington, N.J.) added 16 victories and three losses. The women were led by a an undefeated weekend from three-time All-American foilist Sara Walsh (Mishawaka, Ind.) who was 13-0, and a 21-6 mark posted by senior epee captain and All-American Nicole Mustilli (South Orange, N.J.).

Head Coach Yves Auriol: Yves Auriol is in his fourth season as head coach of both the men’s and women’s team. Auriol has achieved great success in his first three seasons guiding the Irish to three second-place finishes at the NCAA championships. Heading into the weekend Auriol sports a career record of 387-22 (.946) and looks to post his 400th career victory. When the women notched their second win of the season against Pennsylvania, Auriol gained his 300th women’s coaching victory. The coach will also look to achieve his 100th men’s coaching victory this season. Returning eight of 10 1998 NCAA championship competitors and seven of the eight 1998 Irish-All-Americans, Auriol is looking forward to another successful season.

’99 Irish Fencing Results

      Men's ResultsHaverford       W, 24-3Penn State      L, 13-14Pennsylvania    W, 19-8 Stanford        W, 14-13NYU             W, 15-12St. John's      W, 16-11Columbia        W, 16-11
Women's ResultsHaverford W, 31-1Penn State L, 9-23Pennsylvania W, 21-11Stanford W, +16-16NYU W, 19-13St. John's W, 21-11Columbia L, 12-20

National Rankings

Men 1.  Penn State 2.  Notre Dame 3.  Stanford 4.  Columbia 5.  St. John's 6.  Pennsylvania 7.  Princeton 8.  Yale 9.  NYU10.  Rutgers

Upcoming Meets

Feb. 5-6      at Duke MeetFeb. 20       at Lawrence MeetFeb. 27-28    Midwest Intercollegiate ChampionshipsMarch 6       at Midwest Regional QualifierMarch 18-21   at NCAA Championships