May 25, 2009
Two Air Force fencers were honored at the Academy's annual Individual Awards Ceremony at Clune Arena, Monday, May 25. Freshman Simone Barrette, Squadron 03, received the most valuable female fencer award. Sophomore Daniel Trapani, Squadron 10, was honored as the team's most valuable male fencer.
Barrette was the fencing team's top woman competitor throughout the year. Barrette, from Louisville, Ky., earned all-region honors at the NCAA West Regionals with an NCAA qualifying third-place finish among the 10 top collegiate epee competitors. While recovering from a knee injury, Barrette made her first trip to the NCAAs in March, and finished in 23rd place. In her first collegiate season, Barrette had amassed an impressive 28-6 dual-meet record. She was the Falcons' top female finisher in the 2008 Nick Toth Open, Falcon Open, New Mexico Open, Regionals and the Notre Dame dual meet.
Trapani was named the team's most valuable male fencer for his accomplishments throughout the 2008-2009 fencing season. At the 2009 NCAA West Regional Championships, Trapani earned all-region honors (epee) with his NCAA qualifying third-place finish. The native of Houston, Texas, made his first appearance at the NCAA Division I Fencing Championships, finishing in fifth place to earned second-team All-American honors. Trapani has an Academy career dual-meet record of 79-15.
The Academy's fencing team concluded the regular season (2008-2009) with an overall 23-14 dual-meet record and had three fencers qualify for the NCAA National Championships. Junior Peter French (Austin, Texas, CS-31), Trapani and Barrette all qualified in men and women's epee at the NCAA Western Regional Championships, March 7-8. At Regionals, French was the men's epee champion. Trapani took third place in epee, while Barrette finished in third place. While at the 2009 NCAA Division I Fencing Championships, both French and Trapani earned second team epee All-American honors. French, who made his third trip to the NCAAs, took seventh place, while Trapani, who competed in 2008, finished in fifth place. It was Barrette's first trip to the national championships; she finished in 23rd place. The Air Force squad earned 32 points, finishing 16th in the team standings.
The team had seven fencers earn all-region honors: In epee, French, Trapani, freshman Ben Rinaldi (CS-39) and Barrette were all region. In foil, all-region honors went to sophomore Nick Stockdale (CS-19) and freshman Phil Choy (CS-23). In saber, junior Michael O'Connor (CS-16) earned all-region honors.