One Fall Competition Ahead
NEW HAVEN, Conn.—Bolstered by the addition of three talented freshmen, the Yale women's fencing team is in good shape for the 2013-14 season ahead.
The season was originally scheduled to kick off with the Nov. 9-10 Penn State Garret Open in State College, Pa. But that tournament, where a trio of Yale fencers finished in the top 16 last year, has been cancelled. Now the Bulldogs will open competition at the Dec. 8 Brandeis Open in Waltham, Mass.
This year's team will be led by junior captain Lauren Miller, who finished in 13th and seventh place for foil at the past two NCAA National Championships. Miller finished in 10th place in foil competition at last year's Penn State Garret Open.
Alongside Miller, four seniors will help set the tenor of the team: Alison Barton in epee, and Laura Benoit and Brenda Seah in saber. This strong contingent will look to add to their already substantial contributions to the team throughout the course of the season. Juniors Rachel Hayes and Josephine Massey will also seek to set an example for their underclassmen peers in saber and foil, respectively.
Building on their experience on the team last year, Yale's five sophomores are well positioned to make their mark in competition. Jin Ai Yap, Katherine Miller and Katharine Spooner will compete in epee, Maria Martinez in saber, and Megan Murphy in foil. In her first tournament with the Bulldogs last year, Katherine Miller finished in 16th place at the Penn State Garret Open.
With their strong collection of past experiences and tournament performances, the team's three freshmen will hope to post a strong opening to their collegiate careers. Olivia Briffault, a New Yorker, fences epee and foil; Lillie Lainoff, from Washington, D.C., fences saber; and Joanna Lew, a native of Durham, N.C., also fences saber.
After the Brandeis Open the team will continue training over the winter and recommence competition with a home bout against Sacred Heart on Jan. 18.
Report filed by James Lu '14, Yale Sports Publicity.