NEW HAVEN, Conn. - At the conclusion of the second and final day of the NCAA Men's Fencing National Championship hosted by Harvard, Yale junior Nathaniel Botwinick claimed sixth place among all foilists. The performance was good enough to earn Botwinick a spot on the All-America team. Teammate John Gurrieri finished 23rd among the foilists, and Colin Mills finished 24th among the saberists.
In pool play, Botwinick finished with a record of 16 wins and seven losses, good for a .696 winning percentage. That record tied him for fourth place with Ben Parkins of Ohio State and Enzo Castellani of Notre Dame. However, because only the top four fencers in each weapon can advance to the elimination round, only one of the three could move forward. Castellani was the one to advance because he had the highest touches differential (+40). Parkins (+28) came next for fifth place, and Botwinick (+27) took sixth. With his finish, Botwinick qualified as a first-team All-American.
"I am satisfied with my results from this competition," noted Botwinick. "There were some bouts that I fenced very well. I plan on using this experience to improve in anticipation of next year. I also want to thank Coach (Henry) Harutunian and my teammates for their help and support," he added.
Meanwhile, Gurrieri had four wins in 23rd place and Mills had two wins in 24th place.
"Nat's finish today was great," said captain Andrew Holbrook. "It finished off a fantastic season and is something we are all happy to see. John's result may not have been what we would have wanted, but he is capping off a four year career in which he has consistently been one of, if not the, biggest contributor to this team's successes. Colin definitely gained a lot of experience from this tournament and it will help him to continue to be a big part of this team as he continues over the next three years."
The NCAA National Championship is the final event of the fencing season, and with this in mind, Holbrook offered some concluding sentiments.
"With three freshmen at the tournament representing Yale," he said, "this was an opportunity for the team to get experience at the highest levels of college fencing that will make a difference not only this coming year, but those after as well. As the season concludes, it's good to know that we will continue to have a broad experience base to build on in future years."
Report By Arsi Sefaj '11, Yale Sports Publicity