The Crimson won its eighth Ancient Eight crown (photo courtesy Ivy League Athletic Communications).
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - The combination of a 4-1 record and a Princeton win over top-ranked Columbia, the No. 6 Harvard men's fencing team earned a share of the 2014 Ivy League title Sunday at Brown's Olney-Margolies Athletic Center.
The title marks the eighth overall for Harvard and third in four years. Five Crimson earned All-Ivy honors in the repeat title performance. In the men's foil sophomores Jerry Chang and Michael Woo posted 14-1 and 13-2 records, respectively, en route to first-team all-conference accolades. Junior Alexander Ryjik also garnered first-team honors with a 12-3 performance in the sabre. Ryjik's weapon mate sophomore Duncan O'Brien went 11-4 on the weekend to receive second-team All-Ivy status while freshman epeeist Alexander Eldeib's 10-5 mark landed him on the second team.
After a 3-0 start on Saturday, the first match of the championships was a battle of the unbeaten as Harvard faced Columbia. The Lions held an edge after taking the sabre, 3-6, but the Crimson fought back and tallied an identical win in the foil to even the match with the epee remaining. Harvard took the first three bouts to hold a 12-9 lead, which was pushed to 13-12 when Eldeib downed Justin Wan. Luck was not in favor of the Crimson, however, as the Lions won almost simultaneously on two different strips to take the match, 14-13.
The hunt for the crown came down to the final round of the robins while Harvard defeated Brown, 17-10, fifth-seeded Princeton and Columbia battled. The Tigers took the sabre and foil by scores of 5-4 to lead 10-8 headed into the final weapon. The Lions' 5-4 epee victory wouldn't be enough to overcome Princeton's lead as Columbia fell to 4-1 on the day to share the 2014 Ancient Eight Crown with the Crimson.
Harvard, a six-time Beanpot Champion, defends its title Wednesday, Feb. 12 at MIT.