Colorado Springs, Colorado - The UC San Diego men’s and women’s fencing teams came out on top Sunday for the Western Fencing Conference Team Championships with a narrow victory over the competition hosts, Air Force who placed second in both the men’s and women’s events. Third place went to Incarnate Word and fourth to Stanford.
This marks the sixth win for the Triton women in the past seven years and the first ever win for the Triton men. In 2020, the Stanford men clinched the title in a thrilling last bout against UC San Diego after winning the past six consecutive seasons.
Individually, Air Force, UC San Diego, Stanford and Incarnate Word had a fairly even distribution in strong individual performances on Saturday which marked the West Invitational--a more solo-oriented event in preparation for the team championships.
On the men’s side, Air Force’s senior sabreur Matthew Goode had an impressive record of 16 wins spread across the two days. Other standout performances came from Air Force’s junior foilist Nester Levin who totaled 11 wins. UC San Diego’s freshman Larry Song and junior Ben Hadler both had 11 as well in the men’s foil competition. In epee, UC San Diego sophomore Vedran Markota led with 10 wins. For the University of the Incarnate Word, junior epeeist Brandon Benavides led the way with 7 wins, tied with his teammate, junior Jake Thayer in foil.
On the women’s side, Stanford freshman Haley Koo boasted 16 wins in foil with her epeeist teammate Irene Yeu close behind with 15 victories. Stanford’s freshman sabreur Joy Yun also did well across the two days with 13 victories, tied with UC San Diego junior, Julia Hill. Additionally, Incarnate Word junior Sasha Rebchunovska had a strong result with 9 wins.
The event included a recognition ceremony for all seniors graduating this year presided by Lt. Gen. Richard Clark, USA Air Force Academy Superintendent.
The conference would like to extend its gratitude to the Air Force team for putting together an amazing and exciting event that closely followed the mandatory COVID-19 safety procedures.
The qualifiers for the NCAA Championships will be announced on March 18th, and the competition will take place at Penn State University from March 25-28.