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Ramapo Sabre Squad Wins Silver at Cetrulo Fencing Tourney

The Varsity fencing team's epee squad took 8th place in the competition.

The Cetrulo Tournament, started in 1925, is one of the oldest and most prestigious athletic events in the U.S. Sunday, the Ramapo High School Varsity Boys Fencing Team competed in the 2014 Cetrulo Tournament, and 

Sabreists 

Ramapo sabreists won the Cetrulo sabre competition last year and with all the fencers from last year’s squad returning were the top seed and favorites for a gold this year.  The field of 44 schools included many that are not members of the NJ State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA), our governing body, because their fencing programs run year round as opposed to our three month season. Our sabreists fenced extremely well in the first round pool, going 20-1 against seven other schools. 

Alex Gorloff on the A-strip and Adam Carcione on the B-strip fenced aggressively and went 7-0, sweeping the competition. Greg Duch manned the C-strip and did a great job going 6-1. The squad’s record in the first round insured a berth in the top, second round pool of the eight best squads from the first round. Now they were fencing the top 7 teams in the state. 

Unfortunately, one of our squad’s favorite actions, an explosive attack off the en-guard line which “beats the opponent to the punch” was not being recognized by one of the referees. Deprived of one of their best actions the squad could not shake their anger with the calls and did not adjust, as they should have. Carcione fenced best and delivered a 6-1 record, which combined with his first round, produced a 13-1 result, the best record of anyone on the Team.  Unfortunately Alex and Greg had the most difficulty adjusting to the referee’s calls and ended up with 4-3 records. Nevertheless, the combined scores of 14 victories and 7 losses put Ramapo in a 3-way tie for first place, to be resolved by a fence off, with Wachung Hills and Columbia. In the first match of the fence off Ramapo faced Wachung Hills and despite bringing two of the bouts to 4-4 were unable to land the fifth, winning touch. 

The squad lost all three bouts, effectively eliminating our chance for gold but leaving us in a race for silver. In the very next match of the fence off Ramapo faced Columbia and pulled out a 2-1 record.  In the last match of the fence off between Wachung Hills and Columbia we were obviously rooting for Wachung Hills and they came through by going 3-0, leaving Columbia with only one win in the fence off vs. two for Ramapo. Today, Wachung Hills was clearly the best sabre squad at the Cetrulo.

Epeeists

Ramapo epeeists, who graduated their A and B strip fencers from last year’s silver medal squad, had an uphill battle but fenced aggressively and had an outstanding 17-4 record in the preliminary round which gave them a birth in the top, second round pool of the best 8 squads from the first round.  In the first round Adam Polevoy did an outstanding job going 7-0 on the C-strip. Matt Martone and Michael Daly also turned in very good performances of 5-2 apiece on the A and B-strips respectively. 

In the second round, where they were ranked last in the top pool, the competition got extremely tough for the epeeists. Again, Adam Polevoy turned in the best performance with a 4-3 record, and Matt Martone delivered another two wins to give the squad an overall 6-15 record, which put them in 8th place.

Foil Squad

We were not expecting great results from our foil squad but mainly wanted to have as many of them as possible gain some experience that could help them perform better in our dual meets. In the first round Dan Kim and Eugene Won turned in respectable performances with 3-3 records on the A and B-strips, respectively. Jacob Tatz, who recently turned in a very good performance at the Denise O’Conner was unable to find his comfort zone and delivered one win to round out the opening round performance at 7-11. 

The squad’s first round record placed them in the 4th group, which would be fencing for places 24 through 32. In the second round Dan Kim turned in an excellent 5-1 record. Eugene Won also stepped up his game to go 4-2. We made multiple substitutions on the C-strip with the result that Nick Bonini and John DeFalco produced 2-1 records. The squad’s second round effort placed them in a tie for 31st.

While everyone that fenced deserves accolades for their performance over a very long day, there were many team members who served as subs or scorekeepers and who stayed with the squads offering support that also deserve recognition for their hard work. They were Chris Muller, Dan Carione, Kevin Pinney, Matt Rizzo, Ed Limm, Gerry Stamatelatos, and Cameron Breckenridge.

Ramapo’s next meet is against Passaic Valley, away, on Tuesday.

The above was submitted to Patch by Ramapo Fencing Coach Paul Apostol.

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