PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania men’s and women’s fencing teams will begin their 2015-16 seasons this weekend at the Penn State Open. The Quakers will be joined in State College by Ohio State, North Carolina, Notre Dame, Johns Hopkins, Harvard, Temple, Brown, and Yale. The women will compete on Saturday, while the men will take to the strips on Sunday.
The Quakers will be led this season by senior Shaul Gordon and sophomore Zsombor Garzo on the men’s side – while Alejandra Trumble and Shriya Joshi will captain the women’s squad.
Gordon finished with a 12-3 record on sabre at last year’s Ivy Championships, good for third overall, while Garzo was a third-team All-America as a freshman -- placing 10th on epee at last season’s NCAA Championships.
Trumble was a second-team All-Ivy performer, going 11-7 on epee at the 2014-15 Ivy League Round Robins. She also qualified for NCAA’s, placing 14th overall. Joshi finished the season with a mark of 43-41 on sabre, and placed 15th at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic/South Regionals.
Sophomores John Vaiani and Jake Raynis will return on the men’s side, a year removed from stellar freshmen seasons. Vaiani captured the Ivy title in the foil, and became a first-team All-America by finishing third at the NCAA Championships. Raynis joined Garzo as a third-team epee All-America following a ninth place finish at NCAA’s.
Sophomore Arabella Uhry returns for the women, fresh off a 17th-place showing at the NCAA Mid-Atlantic/South Regionals. She finished the season with a record of 49-35 on sabre.
The men’s squad finished tied for third at the Ivy League Championships and fourth at NCAA’s. In addition to the team success, the Quakers had four student-athletes named All-Americans in their respective weapons.
The women’s squad tied for second in the Ivy Championships last season, and placed 14th at the NCAA Championships. Altogether, the Quakers’ men’s and women’s teams combined to finish eighth out of 25 teams at last year’s NCAA Championships.
Both teams will travel to their first North American Cup (NAC) of the season next weekend in Kansas City, Mo.