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Men and women’s fencing medals in first action of season

By Connor Novy

Section: Sports

November 9, 2012

The fencing team pulled off multiple victories at the season-opening competition at Smith College last weekend. At the New England Fall Collegiate Invitational, colloquially called The Big One, four men and two women from Brandeis’ fencing team medaled. The wins included Caroline Matos ’16, who pulled a win for women’s foil, Adam Mandel ’15 with a silver and Jess Ochs-Willard ’15 with bronze.

Mattos, in her college debut, scored 30 touches while allowing only a single touch in five-point bouts, sharing the top seed. She made it to quarterfinals of the elimination bracket, with 45 touches scored to just four allowed. Mattos had her closest match with Linda Zhang of Boston College but defeated her 15-9.

Mattos defeated Vassar student Katie LeClair in the semifinals 15-7 and then won the gold with an impressive 15-4 win over Sacred Heart University’s third-seeded Jayme Smith.

Captain Zoe Messinger ’13 performed admirably in the saber, going 5-0 in the preliminary rounds, proceeding to the quarterfinals where she was defeated by MIT silver medalist Robin Shin.

Emmily Smith ’13 went 4-1 in pool play before falling to Shin in the round of 16.

The men’s team placed three of the top-ten finishers in the saber competition.

Mandel won all six of his bouts with a combined 30-1 score while Ochs-Willard had a 30-7 scoring edge to go undefeated.

Mandel made it into the semifinals, including a 15-9 win over fellow Brandeisian Ben Loft ’15 in the quarterfinals. Mandel then defeated Brown’s Denis Dukhavalov in the semifinals with a score of 15-14 before losing the title match to eighth-seeded Nick Deak of Brown.

Ochs-Willard refused to allow his opponents within seven points on his way to the semifinals. His closest bout, also against his own teammate, came against Eric Shen ’16 in the round of 16. Ochs-Willard defeated Boston College challenger Devin Midgley 15-6 in the quarterfinals before also losing to Deak, 15-10, in the semifinals.

After an extremely successful first meet, both squads will return to action on Saturday, Nov. 17 at 1 p.m. for the Northeast Fencing Conference Meet at MIT along with BU, UMass, Tufts, Sacred Heart, Wellesley and MIT.

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