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PHILADELPHIA - The #9 women's fencing team will face another tough test this week at the Ivy League Round Robins, hosted by Yale. The Quakers will face two teams ranked in the Top Ten, as well as another four teams receiving votes in the first CF360 poll of the season.
Penn will face those ranked opponents right away. The Quakers first go up against the #7 Harvard Crimson at 11 a.m. before meeting #2 Princeton at 12:30 p.m. Harvard stands at 8-4 overall but just 2-3 in the new year, with each of those victories coming by narrow 14-13 scores over #1 Penn State and #6 St. John's. None of Harvard's defeats falls into the "bad losses" category however, as they were matched up with #4 Notre Dame, #5 Ohio State and Columbia. Princeton enters the weekend at 13-3 and has scored impressive wins over #8 Temple (14-13) and #4 Northwestern (17-10).
Following a lunch break, Penn returns to the strips at 2:45 p.m. to face Columbia. The Lions come in at 8-5 but have battled hard against top-level competition throughout the season, claiming wins against Harvard, Penn State, Northwestern and Notre Dame. Saturday concludes at 4:15 p.m. against the Brown Bears. Brown has been the surprise team of the league up to this point, but may struggle facing Ivy opponents for the first time this season.
Fencing resumes Sunday morning at 10 a.m. with Penn taking on Cornell. The Big Red have been off since visiting Hutchinson Gym and participating in the Philadelphia Invitational three weeks ago. At that event, the team breezed to win over Johns Hopkins, NJIT and Fairleigh Dickinson but lost to Temple, Duke and Northwestern by wide margins. At 11:30, the Quakers wrap up the meet against Yale. The Bulldogs bring a three-match winning streak into this weekend, looking to avoid a repeat of last year's 0-6 showing.
The Red and Blue went 3-3 at last year's championships to finish fourth out of seven schools. A 0-2 start dashed their title hopes before they recovered with a three-bout winning streak against Yale, Brown and Cornell. Princeton knocked off the Quakers in the finale on its way to a second straight team title.
Action at this year's Ivies will not be streamed, however you can follow the above links to stay up-to-date through a live blog as well as round-by-round results posted shortly after the conclusion of each bout.