PHILADELPHIA - The Penn women's fencing team had two different weapons reach the final at the inaugural U.S. Weapon Squad Championships to claim the overall title on Sunday on the campus of NYU.
The Quakers reached the final in both foil and epee on Sunday while finishing tied for third in sabre. In foil, the trio of sophomore Aida Abdiuklova, and freshmen Juliana Kulik and Wendy Zhao won their first two matches before losing in the finals. They opened with a dominant 44-15 victory over Yale and then took down Haverford by a 45-29 margin. In the finals, Penn lost to league foe Brown by a close 45-40 score.
In epee, it was senior Stephanie Wheeler, sophomore Amrit Bhinder and freshman Gabby Foor who led the Quakers to a 2-1 mark. Penn opened with a 45-19 victory over Farleigh Dickinson and followed with a 46-26 win versus Brown to reach in the finals. In the finals, the Red and Blue couldn't overcome an early deficit, falling to Ivy rival Columbia 34-31.
Finally in sabre, Penn won its first match with a trio of seniors in Diana Ark, Danielle Kamis and Jenna Stahl. The seniors beat Yale 45-31 to start but couldn't overcome Columbia in the second round, losing by a 45-23 margin.
Kamis was also this year's female recpeint of the The Georges L. Cointe Sportsmanship Award. The Cointe Award was created in 1962 to honor the memory of the
longtime coach of Cornell University's team, Georges L. Cointe
(1899-1961). The presentation of the trophy was traditionally made annually to the
male and female fencer at the IFA Championships who best
demonstrates the qualities of sportsmanship. This year with the IFA Championships not being held, they were given instead at this competition.The selection is made
by the coaches of the member teams from among the fencers nominated
by the competitors. The criteria include: superior fencing skills;
well thought out and executed actions; showing a "will to win"
through initiative, determination, drive, and aggressiveness; being
courteous and gracious towards opponents and officials; knowing the
rules and accepting officials' decisions; and is an example for
others to follow.
Penn returns to the strips in two weeks to fence in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional, held at Drew University.