Feb. 1, 2001

The Notre Dame men’s and women’s fencing teams will welcome 10 schools to the Joyce Center Fieldhouse for this weekend’s Notre Dame Open, to be held Feb. 3-4. The event is open to the public and free of charge.

The competition begins at 9:00 a.m. on Saturday, as both teams square off against Michigan State. Subsequent bouts will take place at approximately 90-minute intervals, ending at approximately 6:00 p.m. The event then resumes on Sunday at 8:00 a.m. (with bouts versus Minnesota) and will conclude at approximately 3:30 p.m.

Five pairs of rotating teams will be competing in dual meets at each 90-minute interval, with the 11th team having a rotating bye (Notre Dame’s bye will fall on Saturday, in the 4:30 time slot).

Teams appearing at the open include Air Force, Chicago, Cleveland State, Detroit, Lawrence, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Northwestern and Purdue.

Northwestern provides a formidable opponent for the Notre Dame women (6-3), who escaped last week’s Northwestern Open with a 14-13 victory over the fourth-ranked Wildcats. The Notre Dame men and women will face Northwestern on Sunday at approximately 11:00 a.m.

The Notre Dame men look to remain undefeated (9-0) through the weekend. That could prove to be a difficult task, considering the presence of a strong Air Force squad. The Falcons’ strength lies in epee, led by sophomore All-American Weston Kelsey (he placed ninth at last year’s NCAA Championship). The ND-Air Force clash will precede the Northwestern matchup, at 9:30 on Sunday morning.

The Irish women will be led by a dominant sabre squad, which includes senior Carianne McCullough(10-4), sophomore All-American Natalia Mazur(11-7), and freshmen Destanie Milo(15-4) and Jessie Filkins(13-2). The Irish will need strong performances from their pair of All-American epeeists, sophomores Meagan Call(18-7), and Anna Carnick(14-11), while the women’s foil squad boasts sophomore All-American Liza Boutsikaris(21-4) and freshman Maggie Jordan(18-6).

The Irish men will look to counter Air Force’s dominant epee squad with the return of sophomore Jan Viviani(10-2), who was competing in an international event in Cuba last week while the rest of the team fenced at the Northwestern Open. The men’s foil team is led by All-American Ozren Debic(18-1), and fellow sophomore Forrest Walton(12-8). The men’s sabre squad is headed by defending national champion Gabor Szelle(15-2) and senior All-American Andrzej Bednarski (9-1).


Saturday, February 3, 2001:
9:00 a.m. Michigan State
10:30 a.m. Detroit Mercy
12:00 p.m. Chicago
1:30 p.m. Wayne State
3:00 p.m. Cleveland State
4:30 p.m. (Bye)

Sunday, February 4, 2001:
8:00 a.m. Minnesota
9:30 a.m. Air Force
11:00 a.m. Northwestern
12:30 p.m. Michigan
2:00 p.m. Lawrence