Falcons qualify for NCAA Fencing Championships
March 6, 2011
U.S. Air Force Academy, Colo. -- Three Air Force Academy fencers automatically qualified for the NCAA Men's and Women's Fencing Championships on March 24-27 at Ohio State University. The four West Region schools (Stanford, Air Force, UC San Diego and Cal Tech) took action at the 2011 NCAA West Regional, on Sat., March 5 at the Air Force Academy's Cadet Gymnasium East Gym.
Sophomore Heather Nelson (Clifton Park, NY) won 100% of her bouts in women's saber (8-0) and was one of only two fencers to go undefeated. Stanford's Meaghan Conway went undefeated in women's foil. Freshman Daniel Cohen (Scarsdale, NY) won in men's foil with a 9-1 bout record. Sophomore Scott Pippin (Palm Desert, CA) won in men's saber with a 5-2 bout record.
When asked what she attributed her success to, Nelson said, hard work and practice everyday, and giving everything to every bout and making sure I did everything right."
Daniel Trapani took second place in men's epee with a 9-3 bout record. Before the men's championships, Trapani said his biggest competitors have always been from Stanford and this year he was looking to beat their two toughest fencers. Trapani went 3-1 versus Stanford. Simone Barrette finished third in women's epee with a 7-2 bout record.
Pippin, Cohen and Nelson have an automatic bye to the NCAA Championships, however, the West Region's at-large nominations were yet to be determined at the time of this posting.
"It was a very good finish for us," commented head coach Abdel Salem. "To have two sophomores, Scott and Heather, and Dan Cohen, who is a freshman, earn an automatic bye is very good for us." "I am sad that Dan Trapani did not finish in first place, he put up a very good fight. I was hoping that Simone would get a bye or at least an at-large."
NCAA Fencing West Regional Seedings
How the fencers were seeded on Saturday:
The West Regional format in each weapon was one pool in each weapon with each fencer facing off against the others. The placements were based on the won/loss record of each fencer. Each school can qualify a maximum of two fencers per weapon for the NCAA Championships, March 24-27 at Ohio State. The results from Saturday's championship will count to 60% of the individual qualification for the NCAAs. The other 40% is based on each fencer's individual seed factor (regular-season dual-meet bouts). The NCAA will feature 24 competitors in all six weapons, epee, saber and foil. Each school's region receives a varying number of automatic berths in each weapon. Each school can qualify a max of two fencers in each weapon for the NCAAs. The West Region has two in each weapon for automatic berths, except men's epee, which has three. Two candidates in each weapon may be submitted in each weapon as "at-large" nominees for the NCAAs. (Two total at-large spots in each weapon, for the respective 24-fencer fields in each weapon.)
Seedings for yesterday's championships are listed below:
NCAA FENCING WEST REGIONAL
WOMEN'S FOIL (6 entrants ... 2 automatic NCAA berths)
Seedings information courtesy of Collegefencing360.com and NCAA