And then there was one…
Beijing Olympic Medalist and current #3 ranked US men’s saber fencer James Williams, 24, has recently accepted a job offer to work for a hedge fund in San Francisco. He will discontinue traveling and competing for the rest of the season in what is a huge blow to the US Men’s Saber Team.
Williams was a virtual lock to qualify for the 2010 World Championships in Paris and he is the second most veteran member of the national team. While he has not officially retired, it’s unclear if he’ll be able to continue his career. At the age of 24, he felt the need to begin his professional career and so after a lot of thought, he accepted the offer and he will move out to San Francisco next week.
If Williams is done fencing, the team will still have three fencers who have made strong international results, Ben Igoe, Daryl Homer and Tim Morehouse, but it leaves a lack of depth in men’s saber program. After a very deep and competive 2008 season, Keeth Smart, Tim Hagamen, Patrick Ghattas and Ivan Lee all retired. In addition to Williams, Olympian Jason Rogers is currently on a limited practice and competing schedule and debating if he will continue fencing as well.
The situation leaves open some interesting questions, such as what will happen if Williams qualifies for worlds without competing again? And, who will step up for team USA?
CURRENT USA MEN’S SABER RANKING AND PAST EXPERIENCE:
#1 Tim Morehouse 5196 Points (7-Time National Team Member and Olympian)
#2 Daryl Homer 3258 Points (1-Time National Team Member)
#3 James Williams 3075 Points (4-Time National Team Member and Olympian)
#4 Ben Igoe 2446 Points (1-Time National Team Member)
#5 Barron Nydam 1388 Points
#6 Eric Arzoian 1380 Points
The Stanford Cardinal fencing program received great news.
The coaches and Stanford Fencing Association have announced that they have received a $1.25 million donation from alumnus and former engineering student Jimi Jung. Jung is a sabre fencer and owner of the Lourus Fencing Club in the Republic of Korea (ROK).
2010 NCAA TEAM CHAMPIONS: PENN STATE
Men’s Saber Champion: DARYL HOMER
2nd Place: Dan Bak
3rd: Oleg Ochocki and Avery Zuck
Women’s Saber Champion: CAROLYN VLOLKA
2nd Place: Becca Ward
3rd: Dagmara Wozniak, Margarita Tschomakova
Women’s Epee Champion: Margherita Guzzi Vincenti
2nd: Noam Mills
3rd: Anastasia Ferdman/Courtney Hurley
Women’s Foil Champion: NICOLE ROSS
2nd: Doris Willette
3rd: Evgeniya Kirpicheva/Dayana Sarkisova
Men’s Epee Champion: Marat Israelian
2nd: Peter French
3rd: Nick Chinman, Dwight Smith
Men’s Foil Champion: Gerek Meinhardt
2nd: David Willette
3rd: Miles Chamley-Watson/Enzo Castellani
CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL THE FENCERS!
FULL RESULTS: http://www.prisedefer.com/
This is really a great story about a pair of school’s in Massachussetts who have fencing programs for blind students. The story has been an amazing viral success as well starting with a twitter post!
Here are some excerpts from the Associated Press Article:
Kadlik duels Monday in what’s being billed as a first-of-its kind match between students at schools for the blind – Perkins and The Carroll Center for the Blind in nearby Newton.
The match was the brainchild of Perkins fencing instructor Cesar Morales, founder of the International Fencing Club in suburban Boston and also a teacher at the Newton school. Morales said the students got bored fencing against the same people week after week and needed outside challenges.
And how does blind fencing work?
There are no special rules and no greater risk of injury for the blind students, Morales said. They wear the same protective jackets and headgear as sighted fencers. They start with their weapons touching, then fence on command from the officials, just like a fencing bout for the sighted. There are no verbal cues from coaches, and they use the same electronic scoring devices that buzz and light up when a fencer touches the tip of their weapon to their opponent’s torso or head.
To keep the blind fencers oriented, Morales uses a rectangular carpet much like the “strip” sighted fencers use.
Very cool stuff and go Cesar Morales who is a friend of mine and former assistant coach at Brandeis University when I was a student.
Ahhh, back to work promoting fencing…
Had the pleasure of working with Photographer Phil Moy and stylist Cristian Mendez this evening. We were shooting a story on the synergy of fencing and fashion with Fall 2010 clothing from Antonio Azzuolo.
The threads were very fun and cool. Here are a few outtakes from the shoot and will keep you posted when the real pictures are published! I’m also kind of excited because later in the week I’ll be doing a shoot with my Beijing teammates James Williams, Keeth Smart and Jason Rogers with celebrity photographer and America’s Next Top Model judge, Nigel Barker.
Should be fun!