PHILADELPHIA Penn got its dual-meet season underway on Saturday as it hosted teams in Hutchinson Gym. The men went undefeated on the day. Their season record now stands at 4-0
The men started off competition against John Hopkins. The Quakers earned a hard-fought, 19-8 win over the Blue Jays. Penn swept in sabre, 9-0, and was victorious in epee, 6-3. Johns Hopkins, however, won foil, 6-3, for the Quakers only loss in a weapon on the day. 12 fencers went undefeated for the Red and Blue against John Hopkins. Leading the way were Andrew Bielen, Matthew Kolasa, Jonathan Berkowsky, Ron Berkowsky, Ben Wieder and Jacob Wischnia who all went 2-0.
Up next for Penn was Drew. Epee was a hotly contested weapon, with Penn ultimately able to pull out a 5-4 win as they held off a late Drew charge. Wieder and Wischnia were again 2-0 for Penn. Foil saw Mario Ponticello and Ron Berkowsky each win their two bouts en route to a 7-2 win. The Quakers won sabre, 8-1, fueled by 2-0 performances from Bielen, Jon Berkowsky and Kolasa.
The Quakers continued to gain steam throughout the meet. In their third match, the Quakers defeated Stevens Tech, 22-5. Alex Salsman was a revelation for Penn, winning both of his matches in foil. He was joined in the undefeated column by Ron Berkowsky and Dan Shiff. Sam Monk, Wieder, Wischnia, Kolasa, Bielen and Jon Berkowsky all went undefeated against the Ducks as well.
Penn wrapped up play against Sacred Heart. The Red and Blue competed hard until the very last match, winning 25-2. The only individual losses for the Quakers came in epee. Penn was able to sweep both sabre and foil. Salsman continued his impressive performance, winning all three of his bouts.
Individually, Penn had many fencers start their season with great momentum. Six fencers went undefeated through all competition Saturday. Bielen, Jon Berkowsky, Kolasa and Wischnia were all 8-0. Ron Berkowsky was 7-0. Brett Cloak-Gentile was 3-0 and Thomas Boutin was 2-0.
The men are now off until they compete in the Philadelphia Invitational at Temple on January 13, 2008. They will participate in the annual Alumni Meet at Penn on January 6, 2008.