ACADEMIC INTEGRATION COMPETITIVE EXCELLENCE

IN DIVISION I ATHLETICS

 

Harvard Fencing Heads to Princeton for Ivy League Championships

Freshman Lucas Lin (left) is part of the men's foil squad this season (Harvard Athletic Communications).

The Particulars
The Harvard men's and women's fencing teams head to Princeton, N.J., for the 2011 Ivy League Championships Saturday and Sunday.

Cohen Named National Fencer of the Week
Sophomore Benjamin Cohen was named Men's National Fencer of the Week for Jan. 31-Feb. 6 by CollegeFencing360.com. Cohen went undefeated in two duals and fell only once in another Sunday to lead No. 2 Harvard to a perfect 3-0 day at the Eric Sollee Invitational hosted by MIT.

Kiefer Named "Primetime Performer" of the Week
Freshman Alexandra Kiefer was named a "Primetime Performer" for the week of Jan. 31-Feb. 6 by CollegeFencing360.com. Kiefer went a perfect 9-0 Sunday, allowing a total of only 10 touches in those nine bouts, to lead Harvard to three wins at the Eric Sollee Invitational. Kiefer's spotless record was the highlight of a foil squad that went 25-2 Sunday.

About Harvard
The No. 2 men's squad has marched to an 11-3 record in duals this season, including wins over defending national champion Penn State and ranked teams Duke, Columbia, Ohio State, Penn and St. John's. The Crimson will be looking to claim its sixth Ivy title in 2011 and first since 2007.

The No. 3 Harvard women are 11-3 this season, having beaten defending national champion Penn State twice and owning wins over ranked teams St. John's and Penn. The Crimson is going for its fifth Ivy title in 2011 and first since 2009.

Women's Field
Princeton
The Tigers enter the competition as the defending champions, having posted a 6-0 record at last season's event. The Tigers edged Columbia by a 15-12 margin at the 2010 Ivy Round-Robin and Columbia went on to finish second with a 5-1 mark. Princeton will be trying to claim back-to-back titles for the first time since the 2000 and 2001 seasons.

Brown
The Bears, who are receiving votes in the latest USFCA College Fencing Coaches Poll, will be looking to claim their first Ivy title in 2011. Sophomore sabreist Caitlin Taylor and freshman foilist Kathryn Hawrot posted 17-1 marks to lead Brown to wins over Tufts, Dartmouth, MIT and Smith at the Northeast Fencing Conference's meet No. 2, Jan. 22.

Columbia
The sixth-ranked Lions will be looking to claim their ninth Ivy title in 2011 and first since 2008. Columbia, which earned first-place honors in 2007 and 2008, was the last team to successfully mount a title defense. Columbia has faced a challenging slate thus far, taking part in both the NYU Invitational and St. John's Cup. At the St. John's, the Lions picked up a 14-13 win over third-ranked Harvard. The sabre squad came up big against the Crimson, picking up six wins, including a 3-0 performance by junior Sammy Roberts.

Cornell
The Big Red, which is receiving votes in the latest USFCA College Fencing Coaches Poll, will be looking to claim their first Ivy title in 2011. Cornell enters the Ivy Round Robin with a 7-4 record, highlighted by wins over North Carolina (22-5) and John Hopkins (18-9) at the Philadelphia Invitational Jan. 23. Junior foilist Rebecca Hirschfeld led the team with a 15-3 record at that event.

Penn
The eighth-ranked Quakers will be looking to claim their 11th Ivy title in 2011 and first since 2004. Penn has taken part in the Philadelphia Invitational, the Penn State Invitational and MIT Invitational. Highlights by the Quakers include victories over North Carolina (21-6 and 23-4), Duke (15-12) and Sacred Heart (19-8 and 19-8).  

Princeton
The fourth-ranked Tigers will be looking to make it two Ivy titles in a row as they play host to the 2011 Round-Robin. A successful defense would yield the program's fifth Ivy championship. Princeton most recently took on a challenging field at the Northwestern Duals on Feb. 5-6 in Evanston, Ill., and earned a notable win over ninth-ranked Temple (16-11).

Yale
The Bulldogs, who are receiving votes in the latest USFCA College Fencing Coaches Poll, will be looking to claim their seventh Ivy title in 2011 and first since 2002. Yale most recently downed Vassar (16-11) on Jan. 31 and Sacred Heart (19-8) on Jan. 29. The Epee squad led Yale in the win over Vassar as it posted an 8-1 record, led by senior Tasha Garcia and sophomore Robyn Shaffer, who both went undefeated.

Men's Field
Brown
The Bears, who are receiving votes in the latest 2011 USFCA College Fencing Coaches Poll, will be looking to claim their first Ivy title in 2011. Sophomore Teddy Weller posted a 14-1 mark in sabre to lead the Bears to wins over Tufts, Vassar, Dartmouth, Brandeis and MIT at the Northeast Fencing Conference's meet No. 2, Jan. 22. Freshman foilist Ben McDonald chipped in with a 10-2 record at the same event.

Columbia
The eighth-ranked Lions will be looking to claim their 35th Ivy title in 2011 and first since 2008. Columbia has faced a challenging slate thus far as part of both the NYU Invitational and St. John's Cup fields. In the SJU Cup, freshman foilist Alex Pensler posted a 9-6 mark against some of the nation's best, while fellow freshman foilist Bo Charles posted 3-0 sweeps against Harvard and St. John's.

Penn
The seventh-ranked Quakers will be looking to claim their 15th Ivy title in 2011 and first since 2009. Penn opened the season with an eight-match win streak that included wins over Duke (15-12), North Carolina (19-8) and John's Hopkins (19-8). Sophomore sabreist Evan Prochniak posted a perfect 10-0 record at the Penn State Invitational and was then named CollegeFencing360.com's National Fencer of the Week on Feb. 2.

Princeton
The sixth-ranked Tigers will be looking to make it two Ivy titles in a row as they play host to the 2011 Ivy Round-Robin. A successful defense would yield the program's 14th Ivy championship. Princeton most recently took on a challenging field at the Northwestern Duals on Feb. 5 and 6 in Evanston, Ill., where the Tigers' downed 10th-ranked Stanford, 17-10, in their only win versus a ranked opponent.

Yale
The Bulldogs, who are receiving votes in the latest USFCA College Fencing Coaches Poll, will be looking to claim their fourth Ivy title in 2011 and first since 1996. Yale most recently knocked off Vassar Jan. 31 by a 19-8 margin. Sophomore saberist Colin Mills assembled a perfect 3-0 record against Vassar, as did senior foilist Nathaniel Botwinick and junior foilist Shiv Kachru.

Up Next
Both Harvard squads will compete the annual fencing version of the Beanpot in Waltham, Mass., Feb. 16.