March 3, 2008

Pearce, Gurrieri and Botwinick Punch Tickets to NCAA's

March 3, 2008

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Junior epeeist Michael Pearce finished second to lead the Yale attack at Sunday's NCAA Northeast Regional Championships. Foilists sophomore John Gurrieri (4th) and freshman Nathaniel Botwinick (8th) joined Pearce in qualifying for the NCAA Championships to be held in Columbus, Ohio beginning Mar. 13.

Pearce will be making his third trip to the NCAA's. During his freshman campaign, he finished in fifth place and was named an All-American. This year, he was the number one qualifier from the Northeast region based on a number of metrics, one of which was his second-place finish at Sunday's individual tournament. It will be Gurrieri's second trip in as many years.

Pearce, a San Francisco, Calif. native, advanced to the final pool of ten epeeists, where he compiled a 6-3 record, good enough for a tie for second. But his +6 indicator (six more touches scored than received) bettered that of Harvard's Teddy Sherrill, also 6-3 in pool fencing, and broke the tie.

Gurrieri and Botwinick both advanced to the final pool of 11 foilists. Gurrieri's 5-5 record landed him in a tie for fourth place. Again, it was the Medford, N.J., native's +2 indicator that made the difference.

Junior saberist Sebastian Cano-Besquet placed 15th Sunday but missed out on qualifying. Other Elis in action included foilist Andrew Holbrook (15th) and epeeists Gabe Billings (24th) and captain Steve Miller (28th).

Report filed by Nicholas Thorne '08, Yale Sports Publicity