NORTHAMPTON, Mass. – Junior Andrew Holmes (Centereach, N.Y.) won the foil championship at The 2013 BIG ONE Intercollegiate Fencing Tournament at Smith College on Saturday. Almost 500 fencers competed in the season-opening tournament.
Junior saber squad captain Thomas Gerrity (East Setauket, N.Y.) was the silver medalist in Saber. Junior Khristopher White (East Orange, N.J.) also was a medalist with an 8th place result in epee. Holmes improved on his 3rd place finish last year which was won by his brother and now Pioneers assistant coach Stuart Holmes. Other notable performance on the day include top-16 finishes by Joseph Faicco (10th) and James Turner (12th ) in foil, Cody Richard (9th), Michael Fenech (10th), Kevin Almerini (12th) and Jonathan Jacovino (16th) in epee, and Chris DiPietro (9th), Adyel Duran (10th), and Schuyler Milone (13th) in saber.
"This event is always the first indicator to see how well we are prepared for the dual meet season", said head coach Dr. Thomas Vrabel. "While we were solid overall, we saw that we still have a lot of work to do in the coming weeks of practice. Andrew Holmes had an amazing day with very impressive performances in his last three bouts. He is ready to take over the stopper spot that his brother Stuart was in for us over the past two years. Tommy Gerrity was very impressive in his run to the championship saber bout. All his hard work is paying off both in cleaner actions and a much higher level of confidence.
"I am also impressed with how well our freshmen (Richard, Turner, Duran and Milone) did," Vrabel added. "Their performances were very pleasant surprises and they are adapting well to college fencing. There is no question that the overall talent level in the Northeast Fencing Conference is as high as it has ever been. I do know that we will be ready to do our absolute best and time will tell if that will be good enough to bring home another championship."
The Pioneers are back in action on Sunday, November 10th at the Vassar Invitational. Fencing will begin at 10:00 AM.