HAVERFORD, Pa. – Duke freshman Becca Ward won the women’s saber bracket at the 2009 Atlantic/South Regionals and was one of five Duke fencers to qualify for the NCAA Championships.
Ward, who won two bronze medals with Team USA at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China, was Duke’s top finisher at the Regional tournament after going 53-2 with the Blue Devils during the regular season.
The Blue Devils will send two men’s foil fencers to the NCAA Championships – sophomore Dorian Cohen and freshman Dan Cohen – along with senior saber Peter Truszkowski and freshman epee Jonathan Parker, who each earned top-eight finishes in their respective weapons. Fellow freshman saber Tristan Jones was also nominated for an at-large bid and will find out later in the week if he will travel to the National Championships, which take place on March 19-22 in State College, Pa.
Dorian Cohen and Parker both took fifth place in their weapons, while Dan Cohen and Truszkowski notched eighth-place finishes. Cohen, who recently took third at the Junior Olympics after going 42-4 during the regular season, will make his second straight appearance at the NCAA Championships after notching a sixth-place finish at the event and earning All-America honors as a freshman. Truszkowski, a senior captain and two-time All-America choice, will be making his team-leading third appearance at the NCAA Championships following an eighth-place showing last season.
Ward helped the women’s saber squad to a team-best 17-3 record in her first season as a Blue Devil, while the men’s quintet of Dorian and Dan Cohen, Parker, Jones and Truszkowski led the men’s team to an overall record of 13-5. The Cohens, along with Eliot Cohen and Nikola Lahcanski helped the Duke foil squad to an 18-3 record, while Jones and Parker contributed to a 12-6 epee record and Truszkowski led the saber squad to an 11-7 finish.
With five fencers advancing to the NCAA Championships, the 2009 Duke fencing team is sending the second-most fencers in school history to the NCAA Championships. The record for the most participants in a given year is six, which occurred in 2006 when five women’s fencers and one men’s fencer – Truszkowski – all advanced to the National Championships.
Duke Fencing Results
Haverford, Pa. (Drew University)
March 7, 2009
** - Fencer qualifies for NCAA Championships
# - Fencer nominated for at-large bid to NCAA Championships