March 25, 2000

STANFORD, Calif. — The Notre Dame men’s and women’s fencing teams improved to third heading into the final of four days at the 2000 NCAA combined men’s and women’s fencing championship in Stanford, Calif. A strong performance by the men’s squad helped the Irish outscore first-place Penn State by 15 points after the first four of eight rounds. Penn State continues to lead with 143 points, followed by St. John’s with 134 and Notre Dame and Stanford both in third place with 132.

The Irish posted a 7-1 record against Penn State in men’s epee and foil, a 5-3 mark against St. John’s in men’s epee and sabre and an 0-4 record against Stanford in men’s foil. Irish sophomore sabreman Gabor Szelle — runnerup at the 1999 NCAA championships — stands in first place in men’s sabre with a 12-2 record. The overall team champion will be determined after the final four rounds of the men’s weapons on Sunday.

Freshman Jan Viviani stands in fifth place in men’s epee after compiling a 10-4 record on Saturday, just two wins behind first-place Alex Roytblat of St. John’s and tied with three other fencers with 10 wins. Sophomore All-American Brian Casas is 20th after going 5-9 on Saturday.

Freshman foilist Ozren Debic is currently third and also is two wins out of first place with an 11-3 record. Stanford’s Felix Reichling is in first with a 13-1 record, including a 5-4 win over Debic. Forest Walton, another Irish freshman, is 10th with a 9-5 record.

Szelle is tied with Brandeis’ Tim Morehouse with a 12 wins and has a 5-1 win over Morehouse. Junior Andrzej Bednarski is just two wins behind Szelle and Morehouse with an 8-4 record.