MADISON, N.J. – The Haverford College women's fencing team wrapped up its fall semester schedule with a strong second place performance at the Drew Holiday Invitational on Saturday. The Fords pulled out hard-fought victories against Fairleigh Dickinson (won, 14-13) and Long Island University (LIU)-Post (won, 15-12), along with convincing victories over TCNJ (won, 19-8) and Florida (won, 17-10). Haverford's lone setback was a 17-10 bout against the host Rangers.
Haverford's foilists recorded a team-best 30 bout victories throughout the five rounds of fencing. The squad won four of its five squad matchups, being edged out by a slight 5-4 score against Drew. The best performance of the afternoon came when the foilists secured eight of the nine victories against LIU-Post during the final round to save that team win. First year Hanna Kopits led those efforts with a 3-0 record against LIU-Post as she finished the day with nine wins against just three defeats. Kopits also went unbeaten during three bouts against TCNJ.
Another first year, Jia-Ming Tuan, won each of her three bouts against LIU-Post. She was 8-4 overall on the day with two more key wins against Fairleigh Dickinson and Florida. Captain Alexandra Morrison did not contest the final foil bouts against LIU-Post, but was 8-2 overall in the four rounds leading up to that win. She was 3-0 against Florida to go along with two wins against Drew and TCNJ. Zuyi Wang filled in admirably for the Fords' captain in the final round, securing two key victories in the 15-12 victory. Those two wins highlighted Wang's five victories as she also went 2-1 against TCNJ.
With foil saving the last round, it was sabre's 6-3 weapon squad win against Fairleigh Dickinson that pushed the Fords to a 14-13 team win during the first round. Anna Neuheardt starred all day for the Fords with a 14-1 individual record. Fencing all five rounds, the junior ace went a perfect 3-0 during each of Haverford's three victories, with two more wins against the host Rangers.
Emily Brown and Krystal Li also won five bouts for the sabrists, who recorded three weapon squad victories. Brown had two victories against FDU and TCNJ to start her day. Li was a perfect 3-0 against TCNJ, securing two more bouts in the victory over Florida. Ayesha Bhikha added two wins to her squad's day, prevailing over opponents from FDU and Florida.
Haverford's epeeists were seemingly locked in close weapon squad matchups all afternoon, fencing to 5-4 squad scores in three of the rounds and 6-3 scores in the first and final team matchups. Lauren Pronger and Katie Bradley paced their squad mates with six victories on Saturday. Bradley was a perfect 3-0 in the crucial matchup with Drew, adding two more wins during epee's 5-4 victory over Florida. Pronger was also 2-1 against the Gators, recording two additional wins against TCNJ.
First year Valentina Zavala-Arbelaez was not far off her teammate's pace. Highlighting her five individual victories were 2-1 records against TCNJ and LIU-Post. Classmate Claire Cai was inserted into the lineup to pick up victories against FDU and Florida.
Women's fencing will now have an extended break over the holidays before returning to competition in the middle of January. Tuning up for the second half of the season with some of its most rigorous training over winter break, the Fords will return to the strips on Sunday, January 14 when they take part in the Penn State Invitational.
1. Drew (5-0)
2. Haverford (4-1)
3. FDU (3-2)
4. LIU-Post (2-3)
5. Florida (1-4)
6. TCNJ (0-5)
Haverford Team Scores
Haverford def. FDU, 14-13
Haverford def. TCNJ, 19-8
Drew def. Haverford, 17-10
Haverford def. Florida, 17-10
Haverford def. LIU-Post, 15-12