Penn Fencing Remains Among Nations Elite

Coming off an exceptional season on all fronts, the Quakers looked to continue that success in 2004-05 with a solid core ofreturning letterwinners and incoming freshmen. They wrapped up 2004-05 with a 16-4 overall record and a 2-3 mark in the Ancient Eight.

Invitational Beginning

The Penn fencing team opened the 2004-05 season at a series of invitational events. Both teams opened the season with competition at the 25th Annual Temple Invitational.

On the women’s side, four fencers finished in the top ten in the three weapons, including one second-place finisher and one third-place finish. In the saber, sophomores Katelyn Sherry and Cassandra Frey finished second and tied for third, respectively. In the foil, sophomore Eve Overton finished in fifth place. In the epee, sophomore Jackie Schramm finished tied for third.

The Quakers wrapped up the fall campaign at the 32nd Penn State Open. Six student-athletes finished in the top-25 in the three events. In the sabre, Sherry and Cassandra Frey finished fifth and 17th, respectively, in the event, while in the epee, freshman Angelika Kyrimi finshed 16th in the event and sophomore Margaret Foster finished 23rd. In the women's foil, freshman Zoya Abdikulova placed 15th and sophomore Eve Overton placed 30th for the Quakers.

Coming Back From A Break

The Quakers then took a month-long break before opening the winter campaign with a bang. Penn's men's and women's fencing team were perfect on Jan. 22 in competition at the Penn State Mulit-Meet with wins over Drew, Haverford and Duke.

The women defeated Drew 22-5, Haverford 25-3 and Duke 16-11. In the foil, Christina Kaneshige went 9-0 on the day, as did Overton. Katelyn Sherry finished the day with a 9-0 record in the saber for the Red and Blue while Cassandra Frye finished the day 7-2 in the weapon. Holly Buechel had a 8-1 record in the women's epee on the day.

Against Ivy Competition

The Quakers opened up Ivy League play on Jan. 29 at Yale, with the women’s team falling to the Bulldogs, 15-12. The Quakers notched their only victory on the day in the epee, 5-4. In the sabre, Sherry notched two wins while Buechel and Kyrimi each went 2-1 in the Red and Blue's epee victory. The foil was also decided by a score of 5-4, this time with the weapon going to the Bulldogs.

The Red and Blue took a quick break from Ivy competition to return home for a meet. The women swept Johns Hopkins and Rutgers on the day. It was then back on the road, where at Harvard, the Quakers went 2-1 on the day, with wins over NYU and Boston College while falling to Harvard. The team then swept the competition at the MIT Multi-Meet before returning home to defeat Princeton and Temple. Penn closed out the dual-meet season at Temple, with the women going 3-2 on the day.

Tournament Time

Then it was time to head to Brown, where the Quakers competed in the Intercollegiate Fencing Association Championship. On the women’s side, the Quakers finished third overall. In the team rounds, the women's sabre team placed first overall for the second-consecutive year. The team notched 29 victories, with Sherry collecting eight wins on the day, Lauren Phillips having 10 wins and Frey notching 11 victories. The Quakers finished third in the women's foil with 24 victories and fifth in the women's epee with 21 wins on the day. Individually, Sherry defeated teammate Phillips for the bronze metal in the sabre, 15-9. Team captain Kaneshige finished sixth in the foil and Buechel took the bronze in the epee.

Regional Strength

The NCAA Regionals were then held at Drew University. Buechel won the women's epee competition and Kaneshige placed second in the women's foil. Overton finished in ffifth in the foil as well. In the women's sabre, Sherry placed third and Frey placed fifth. All of those finishers qualified for the NCAA Championships.

An All-American Finish

At the NCAA Championships in Houston, two Quakers earned All-American honors. Buechel placed fourth in the women’s epee competition, earning her second consecutive All-American honor. She was seeded No. 1 headed into the final round of competition after winning the team round of the weapon. Sherry placed ninth in the sabre, earning honorable mention All-American honors, while Frey placed 20th. Kaneshige was 15th in the foil while Overton placed 22nd.

In addition to All-American honors, four Quakers were named to the 2004-05 All-Ivy team. Eiremo and Sherry each earned first-team nods in the sabre. It was the second first-team selection for Eiremo and the second selection for Sherry as well, who was named to the second-team after her freshman campaign.

Joining their teammates on the All-Ancient Eight squad as second-team selections were Buechel and Frey in the epee.

Losing no seniors to graduation, the Quakers will look to build on the success of 2004-05 and the strength of the underclassmen to challenge the nation’s elite in the future.