SAN ANTONIO, Texas – Duke junior Dylan Nollner earned All-America honors after placing fifth in men’s epee at the 2013 NCAA Fencing Championship. Duke has now had a men’s fencer earn All-America honors in six consecutive seasons, a program record.
Nollner finished one touch shy of advancing to the medal rounds as his 15-8 record in the round-robin portion of the tournament tied two other fencers for the third-most wins in the men’s epee field. Nollner’s +17 touch differential was just one touch behind eventual NCAA Champion Marco Canevari, who with a 15-8 record and a +18 differential earned the No. 4 spot in the medal round and defeated top-seeded Peregrine Badger 11-9 and third-seeded Jonathan Yergler 15-9 to win the national title.
"The past two days were some of my best fencing," Nollner said. "It was bittersweet realizing that I was a point away from the semifinals, but everything in fencing is so close like that so you can't lose sleep over it. I can see that my technical and mental games have come very far this season, but this motivates me to train them even further."
Nollner’s fifth-place finish was the highest by a Duke men’s fencer since epeeist Jeremy Kahn placed fifth at the 1997 NCAA Championship after winning the national epee championship in 1996. He is the third men's fencer in Duke history to record a top-five finish at the NCAA Championship and the 13th to earn All-America honors.
Among Nollner’s 15 victories were wins over Badger, of Harvard, and Princeton’s Edward Kelley, who tied for third place after both advanced to the medal rounds.
With the completion of the men’s NCAA Championship Friday, Duke women’s epees Sarah Collins and Emily D'Agostino and saber Sean Cadley will begin the women’s competition on Saturday. The NCAA Women’s Championship will complete Sunday.