Club sport, fencing, has a formidable squad

By Kasia Babinski

In general, sports don’t get much love on this campus. And club sports doubly not. But I just wanted to let you all know how the fencing team is faring this year. As it turns out, they have one of the strongest teams in a long time. Last weekend they fenced a tournament at Northwestern, and both the men’s and women’s teams went 3-1. They whooped up on every team there except for Northwestern, whom they fought valiantly. Of course Northwestern is one of the best division I varsity teams in the country.

What is really exciting is that they have such a strong team despite the graduation last year of several excellent fencers, especially Heath Cabot who is now 53rd in the nation in women’s epee. A lot of their success is due to some really excellent returning fencers, like second-year Chris Shybut and third-year Chris Chiu. Shybut, along with Carrington Ward and Cabot, placed strongly at the North American Cup tournament in South Bend two weeks ago. This tournament is like the World Series of fencing, it’s open to only the best fencers in the world. The team is rounded out by some strong rookies. Foilist Lindsay Atnip is the only first-year to be appointed a captain of the team, and is adding strong fencing and leadership skills as well as a great deal of enthusiasm to the team. Another fencer worth keeping an eye on in the future is Carol Gudanowski. She had never picked up a blade before this fall, and she is already a first-string women’s epeeist. In just a few months she already has better parries than some long-timers on the team.

Fencing has one more tournament, in Detroit on February 22, before the Midwestern Fencing Championships at Notre Dame.