Men's Fencing Places Second at IFA Championships

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – With 63 victories on Saturday, the University of Pennsylvania men’s fencing team finished in second place in the 3-Weapon Team competition at the Intercollegiate Fencing Association (IFA) Championships, for the second consecutive season. Penn finished behind Harvard who totaled 71 victories. The foil team was honored with the Little Iron Man Trophy for taking first place with 25 victories. The Red and Blue placed second in the saber with 24 victories. The Crimson won the saber with 27 wins. Penn placed eighth in the epee tallying 14 victories.

Sophomore Ron Berkowsky’s 10 victories were good enough for top-place in the Men’s Foil A Division. Junior captain Michael Galligan finished in fourth place in the B Division with seven victories. Sophomore Corey Purcell, who has emerged as a solid No. 3 fencer behind Berkowsky and Galligan, placed second with eight victories in the C Division.

“We’re not big on depth, but we’re big on quality in the foil,” said head coach Dave Micahnik. “I don’t know that they lost a dual meet all year, they’ve been strong.”

The saber team had a very strong showing from three underclassmen. In the A Division, freshman Matthew Kolasa finished in second place with eight victories, just behind Harvard’s Tim Hagamen’s nine wins. Fellow freshman Anders Eiremo tied with B Division winner Dan Mahoney from Brown with eight victories; however Mahoney recorded one more net touch than Eiremo to take the top spot. Sophomore Zachary Yeates placed second with eight victories in the C Division.

“They’re three very strong saber fencers,” said Micahnik. “Everyone is good and you probably could’ve flipped them around and had the same results.”

In the epee, Noah Rohrer and Alex Tozzo each recorded five victories. Rohrer placed sixth in the B Division and Tozzo finished fourth in the C. Freshman Ben Wieder competed in the A Division and finished in eighth with four victories.

Penn was equally as successful in the individual weapons competition. Berkowsky continued to dominate his opponents. He won the Gold Medal in the foil, defeating Columbia’s Luka Lazic in the final, 15-4. Wieder lost to Princeton’s Tommi Hurme in the finals of the epee, 15-4. In the saber, Kolasa finished fourth.

The men will look for some help from the women’s team, who compete on Sunday, to help the Quakers win the 6-Weapon Team Championship, which goes to the school that has the most total victories at the end of the two day event. The women get underway at 9 a.m. tomorrow at Hutchinson Gym.