Pioneers Post Win Over NYU at Tradition Tournament as Taylor Walsh Leads Team with Nine Victories

FAIRFIELD, Conn. - The Sacred Heart women' s fencing team hosted Princeton, Penn State, Harvard, NYU and Temple at the 2013 Tradition Tournament at SHU's Pitt Center on Sunday.  Sacred Heart earned an important win over NYU 15-12 while falling to Temple 15-12, Penn State 21-6, Harvard 23-4 and Princeton 24-3.  The Pioneers were led on the day by the youth movement of freshmen saber stars Taylor Walsh (9-6), and Julia Greene (8-7) and sophomore epeeist Mia Volpe (8-7). 

"This is by far the most challenging day of our season," commented head coach Dr. Thomas Vrabel.  "They key for this meet is to stay focused and stay positive while we fence against the elites of collegiate fencing.  Our team fought hard all day and did a great job against NYU.  We knew that we would have to dominate epee and saber to have a chance in this meet, and having those two weapons go 13-5 was critical.  That being said, the job that Tess Kallmeyer did winning two of her foil bouts against NYU was the critical factor that we needed for this win.  Last year Temple beat us 25-2.  To be competitive and win 12 bouts against them in saber and epee shows how far we have come this season".

"This was an important day for Taylor Walsh" said Dr. Vrabel.  "Taylor had a great week of practice and she was able to maintain that consistently high level of performance on Sunday.  Her confidence grows with each meet and as she gains more experience in collegiate competition, she is becoming more assertive in her actions and this is a key for her game.  We are very fortunate to have Walsh and Greene join the team at the same time and I see this duo being one of the cornerstones of the program for the next four seasons.  They have both gotten off to very strong starts (Greene is 39-9 and Walsh 34-13) this year they should be serious contenders to advance to the NCAA Championship round come March." 

"It is also amazing to see how far Mia Volpe has come this season" added Vrabel. "Mia is leading our epee squad with a 37-14 record and has reached the same level of performance as Natalie Rossetti (32-19) and Megan Floyd (26-15).  She expresses a level of confidence on the fencing strip that is rarely seen and she is never intimidated by the event or the competition.  Mia will also be a strong challenger for going to Ohio State for the NCAA Championship round."

The Pioneers finished the first half of their dual meet season with an 11-6 record.  They will be back in action on Saturday, January 18, 2014 when they travel to Yale for a 1 PM start.