Jan. 20, 2000

The Notre Dame men?s and women?s fencing teams begin their 2000 season this weekend with five matches at NYU on Sun., Jan. 23. The Irish will fence Columbia, host NYU, St. John?s, Stanford and Vassar before returning for a home meet at the Joyce Center on Jan. 29-30. Captains Kimberly DeMaio (women?s epee), James Harris (men?s foil), Magda Krol (women?s foil), Carianne McCullough (women?s sabre) and Clay Morton (men?s sabre) are set to lead the Irish during the 2000 season. Notre Dame also will look to a strong group of freshmen in addition to the returning fencers.

A number of Irish competed at the United States Fencing Association Junior/Open event last weekend in South Bend, an event which helps determine qualifiers for the 2000 Olympic Games and the 2000 Junior/Cadet World Championships in South Bend April 17-25. Freshman foilist Ozren Debic, who currently is ranked 183rd in world senior standings, won the men?s foil open division, while freshman Forest Walton placed 63rd. In men?s epee freshman Jan Viviani, who currently is fifth in the U.S. men?s senior rankings, first in the U.S. junior rankings and 13th in the world junior rankings, finished second last weekend, while senior James Gaither placed 41st in men?s open epee.

The Irish had three sabremen finish among the top 25 in the men?s open division. Sophomore Andre Crompton finished 10th, freshman Matt Fabricant took 16th, while junior Andrzej Bednarski was 21st. In the junior competition, Crompton, who is ranked 152nd in the world among juniors, placed sixth and Fabricant 13th. Bednarksi, Crompton and Fabricant all are ranked among the top 20 men?s senior sabre standings, while Crompton and Fabricant are top 10 in the U.S. junior rankings. Sophomore Gabor Szelle, 15th in the world junior standings, did not compete in the South Bend event.

In the women?s competition, Krol competed in both epee and foil. She took 13th in epee and 55th in foil. Freshman foilists Liza Boutsikaris, ranked 17th among U.S. junior foilists, placed 39th. Freshman Natalia Mazur, 15th among U.S. junior sabrewomen, finished 53rd in the open division and 21st in the junior and McCullough 55th in women?s open sabre. Freshman Meagan Call took 24th in the junior women?s epee competition.