December 3, 2001

Fencers Fare Well at NIFWAs

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The women’s fencing team ended a weekend of mixed fortunes on a high note yesterday when it produced four finalists in the NIWFA tournament at Fairleigh Dickinson in Teaneck, N.J. A day earlier, the squad had fallen 19-8 to Yale despite some stirring competition in the epee, which the Red won 5-4.

The National Intercollegiate Women’s Fencing Association (NIWFA) tournament was founded in 1929 with Cornell as one its founding members. The Red counted it among its highlights last season, producing three finalists. The squad topped that figure this year, with four. In the foil competition, Rachel Lee reached the finals, finishing sixth overall. The saber squad also produced one finalist, Elinor Granzow, who won the silver medal. The epee squad, however, saw two of its members reach the finals, Erica Gale, who finished third, and Patty Blumenauer, who won the gold medal, going 5-0 in the round robin contest.

The strong performance in all three weapons was a source of satisfaction for head coach Al Peters. “I thought our results were very good,” he said, “Elinor and Rachel, especially. We were very proud of how they did. And we haven’t had a gold medal, to my knowledge, in five or six years, so that was also very pleasing.”

The squad’s trip to New Haven to play Yale on Saturday elicited more mixed results. While the epee competition went the Red’s way thanks to Stephanie Glaser and Siobhan Cully, who each won two of their three matches, Yale’s outstanding performance in the other two weapons proved too much for the Cornell to handle, as they fell 19-8.

Nevertheless, Peters found some cause for optimism in the loss. “We played hard, and I was very proud of how well we did, particularly in the epee,” he notes. “Obviously, we would have liked for it to turn out differently but they were just too tough in the saber and foil.”

The Red has another large chunk of time off before resuming against Drew and Hunter at 11:00 A.M. in Ithaca on Jan. 20.

Archived article by Andrew Bernie