Men’s Fencing Kicks off 2016-17 Campaign at Tradition Tournament

Men’s Fencing Kicks off 2016-17 Campaign at Tradition Tournament

Junior Eric Zhao returns to the strip as the 2016-17 co-captain (Gil Talbot).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Harvard men's fencing team is set to open their 2016-17 slate at the Tradition Tournament December 4 in Fairfield, Connecticut against Sacred Heart, NJIT, New York University, Penn State and Vassar.

Last Season
Harvard went 10-3 during the 2015-16 season, finishing seventh as a team at the NCAA Championships. Senior Stephen Mageras finished the NCAA Tournament with his first All-America accolade with a 14-9 record and a plus-18 touch differential joining the second team. Michael Woo '16 tallied his third All-American selection finishing with a plus-16 touch differential and a 14-9 mark joining Mageras on the second team.

Harvard returns six letterwinners from last year's squad: Sabre fencers Eli Dershwitz and Eric Zhao, foil fencers Jonathan Gill and Stephen Mageras, and epee fencers Albert Chien and Milo Davidson.
The Crimson welcome five freshmen to the squad: foil fencers Matthew Branman, Duncan Rheingans-YooGeorge Haglund and sabre fencers Erwin Cai and Phillippe Guy.

Scouting the Field
Harvard swept at the 2015 Tradition Tournament, securing a 21-6 mark over Sacred Heart, a 20-7 score against NYU, outlasting Penn State 17-10, recording a 19-8 score against Vassar and a 22-5 score against NJIT. After securing the win against Penn State, Harvard broke the five-year losing streak against the Lions.

Leading the Way
Head coach Peter Brand enters his 19th season at the helm for the Crimson, which has posted a winning record in each of the last 15 seasons under his watch. Harvard has won eight Ivy League Championships during his tenure, while also winning the 2006 National Championship. Brand owns a 185-78 record on the men's side and has coached a combined 47 All-Americans at Harvard. 
Rio, Baby
Sophomore Eli Dershwitz competed for the United States at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Dershwitz is the seventh Harvard fencer to compete in the Olympics, with the last being Emily Cross '09 and Noam Mills '12 who both competed in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. The Serborn, Massachusetts native is the top-ranked U.S. saber fencer, and was the youngest fencer to compete for the U.S. at the 2016 Olympics at the age of 20.

Captaining the Ship
Senior Stephen Mageras and junior Eric Zhao have been chosen by their teammates as the Harvard men's fencing captains for the 2016-17 season.
What's Next?
The men take a break from action until the spring semester, returning on January 21 in Queens, N.Y. against Columbia, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Penn State and St. John's.