February 6, 1999

DURHAM, N.C. – The fourth-ranked Notre Dame women’s fencing team won four of five matches Saturday at the Duke Invitational. The Irish defeated North Carolina 23-9, Air Force 22-10, Rutgers 25-7 and Duke 28-4. The Irish loss came to seventh-ranked Ohio State 17-15. The Irish women are now 14-3 in 1999.

The women were paced by foilists Sara Walsh, Myriah Brown and epeeists Nicole Mustilli and Magda Krol. The All-American foil duo of Walsh and Brown combined for a 34-3 mark on the day with Walsh going 18-1 and Brown posting a 16-2 record. The epee All-Americans, Mustilli and Krol, finished with identical 17-3 records.

The Irish loss to Ohio State was decided by the final bout of the match. The Irish led the match 13-9 before Ohio State won seven consecutive bouts to take a 16-9 lead. The Irish then cut the margin t0 16-15. A victory in the final bout would have given the Irish the win on indicators, but Kiersten Ferguson lost 5-4 in sudden death to Ohio State’s Jaime Rice. This loss marks only the second time in the last 13 seasons (1986-98) that the Irish women have had more than two losses regular season competition.

On Friday February 5, Notre Dame’s second-ranked men’s squad swept the competition at the Duke Invitational. Among the five wins on the day was the landmark 400th-career win for Irish head coach Yves Auriol. Notre Dame beat North Carolina 24-3, Air Force 25-2, Rutgers 20-7, Duke 19-8 and Ohio State 26-1 improving to 16-1 on the season.

The Irish were led once again by the powerful sabre squad, which went 42-3 in the five matches. Freshmen sabremen Gabor Szelle and Andre Crompton each were 13-0, while senior captain and three-time All-American Luke LaValle was 13-1. Charles Hayes added 14 wins for the foil squad, while epeeists Carl Jackson and Brian Casas each finished 11-3.

Auriol’s landmark win came in the 20-7 win over Rutgers. His current career record is 406-23 (.946).