Fencers Turn in a Repeat Performance at Western Region Championships
The Academy's fencing team repeated its past performances at the Western Region Championships last weekend, March 4-6 in California. Stanford University was host to the Western Region fencing teams, UC San Diego, Stanford, Cal State Fullerton, Air Force and Caltech. The Falcons' women's team won its fourth consecutive championship title. The men's team finished second for the second year in a row. Three Falcons, Marisa Romero, Jason Stockdale, and Tim French, again qualified for the NCAA Championships to be held in Houston, Texas on March 17-20.
The Falcons turned in some top individual championship performances. Romero was the women's saber second-place finisher. Eliza Enyart took third place in epee, while teammate Ebony Cook was the third-place finisher in foil. The Stanford women's team was the second-place finisher.
"I was pleased with my performance and the teams overall results. I hope to do well at Nationals this year and make All-American," said Romero.
In the men's competition, Stockdale was the epee champion, while French finished third in epee. In men's foil, Jackson Ranes took third place. In saber, Sam Bartron finished third. Stanford was the overall men's Western Region champion.
"Our results are good and we proved that our fencing program is the best in our region. I am a proud and happy coach. We qualified three fencers to the NCAAs and we have another four alternates. I think we can say that we had a good and successful season," head coach Abdel Salem said.
Going into the NCAA championships, all three Air Force qualifiers are making their repeat performances at the national competition. Romero has qualified for the NCAAs three consecutive years. In 2003 she finished 23rd and in 2004 she placed 24th. Romero has the strength and dedication to improve her past performances to get into the top 20. Both Stockdale and French are All-Americans and will look to earn a spot in the top 11 again in 2005. French finished eighth in 2003 and 16th in 2004. Stockdale was the 11th-place finisher in 2004.