Wellesley Fencing Wins 2019 NEIFC 3-Weapon Team Championship

The Blue were the top women's team at the NEIFC Championships.
The Blue were the top women's team at the NEIFC Championships.

WELLESLEY, Mass. --  Wellesley College fencing won the Women's 3-Weapon Team Title, Sabre Squad Championship and Vitale Cup, and sophomore Julia Calventus-Coveney (Barcelona, Spain) won the individual gold medal in epee at the 2019 New England Intercollegiate Fencing Conference (NEIFC) Championships, as the Blue hosted the event on Saturday at Dorothy Towne Fieldhouse. The NEIFC 3-Weapon Team Championship is the first in Blue program history.

Saturday's NEIFC Championships crowned team, squad and individual champions in foil, epee, and sabre, with team competition beginning in squad round robins before an elimination round determined the individual champion in each weapon.

The Blue won 64 of 78 bouts and had a combined touch ratio of +200 in sabre, epee, and foil squad competitions to win the team championship. Wellesley also won the squad championship in sabre with victories in 23-of-25 bouts (+77) and were the runner-up in the foil and epee squad competition. The sabre squad was the top women's squad in the entire competition, claiming the NEIFC's Vitale Cup. 

The Blue advanced eight fencers to the individual championship round, with Calventus-Coveney winning epee gold, while first year Yasemin Ersen (Newton, Mass.) won silver in sabre, sophomore Lauren Park (Wayne, N.J.) tied for bronze in sabre, and junior Brie Maurer (Fredericksburg, Va.) went on to finish as the silver medalist foil.

Sabre

Park, Ersen, and sophomore Hanamei Shao (Vandenberg AFB, Calif.) all advanced to the individual championship round after leading the Blue to the squad championship in sabre. Park was the top competitor in Pool A, winning 8-of-9 bouts with a +25 touch ratio. Ersen went undefeated in Pool B, winning all nine of her bouts with a +37 touch ratio. Shao finished second in Pool C with six wins in seven bouts (+15).

Shao went on to place fifth, while Ersen and Park would ultimately face each other in the sabre semifinals. Ersen advanced to the final before finishing as the eventual runner-up.

Epee

The Blue finished as the epee squad runner-up, winning 20 of 27 bouts with a +53 touch ratio. Calventus-Coveney paced the squad with a third place finish in Pool A during the team competition, advancing to the individual round by winning 6-of-9 bouts with a +15 ratio. First year Sam Wolstenholme-Britt (Cary, N.C.) was second in Pool B, winning seven of her nine bouts (+16), while classmate Panya Tang (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) was the runner-up in Pool C, winning 7-of-9 bouts (+22).

All three qualified for the individual championship round and finished in the top eight. Tang was 7th, Wolstenholme-Britt was 6th and Calventus-Coveney was the gold medalist.

Foil

The Blue finished as the runner-up in the foil squad standings, advancing two fencers to the individual round with 21 victories in 26 bouts and a +70 touch ratio. Maurer opened the day by winning eight of her nine bouts with a +27 ratio to win Pool A. She then went on to claim individual silver medalist honors in the afternoon.

Sophomore Lucille Tsao (Succasunna, N.J.) advanced to the individual round with a third place finish in Pool B, winning 8-of-9 bouts with a +23 ratio. Sophomore Molly McLachlan (Chapel Hill, N.C.) helped the squad to second in the foil standings by winning 6-of-8 bouts with a +20 ratio but did not advance to the individual round.

Qualified fencers will now head to the 2019 NCAA Northeast Regional on Sunday, March 10, at Vassar College.