NEW HAVEN, Conn. - On Tuesday, March 16, the NCAA Men's and Women's Fencing Committee announced a field of 144 competitors who will participate in the NCAA Fencing National Championships. Among these 144 competitors, the Yale men's fencing team will have three representatives: junior foilist Nathaniel Botwinick, senior foilist John Gurrieri, and freshman saberist Colin Mills.
Competitors for the National Championship are determined based on fencers' performances during the Regional Championships and throughout the regular season. If a fencer places high enough in his or her respective tournament in the Regional Championships, then he or she earns an automatic bid for the National Championship. If a fencer does not receive an automatic bid, then he or she is still eligible to receive an at-large bid from the NCAA Fencing Committee, provided that the fencer placed in the top 12 in his or her tournament.
Three Bulldogs qualified automatically based on their performance at the NCAA Northeast Regional Championship: Botwinick, sophomore Jonathan Holbrook and Gurrieri. In the foil tournament, they took first, fourth and sixth place respectively. Unfortunately, each school is only allowed to send two fencers per weapon, leaving coach Henry Harutunian the difficult choice to choose two among them.
Mills, who finished tenth in the saber tournament recieved an at-large bid from the NCAA Fencing Committee.
The NCAA National Championship will be hosted by Harvard University, on March 27 and 28.
Report by Arsi Sefaj '11, Yale Sports Publicity