March 17, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State fencing team begins its quest for the 2014 NCAA Fencing Championships Thursday in French Field House, with women’s competition beginning at 9:30 a.m. Men’s competition will begin at 9:30 a.m. Saturday. Championships bouts will be held in St. John Arena on at 1:30 p.m. Friday for the women’s competition and at 1:45 p.m. Sunday for the men’s side.
ESPN3 will be airing the semifinal and championship bouts live on Friday and Sunday. This can be accessed at www.watchespn.com. A highlight show of the 2014 Fencing Championships will air on ESPNU at 8 p.m. on April 1.
A recap of the events will be available at the end of each day of competition on OhioStateBuckeyes.com and live stats will be available at www.ncaa.com/fencing.
OHIO STATE AT THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
Ohio State has finished in the Top 5 at the NCAA Championships for the last 12 years. Head coach Vladimir Nazlymov has directed the Buckeyes to three national titles, 2004, 2008 and 2012, and a runner-up finish in 2005. In the 2013 NCAA Championships, the Buckeyes finished in fourth place, highlighted by a gold medal from Marco Canevari in men’s epee.
Ohio State joins Princeton and Penn State as the only schools to qualify the maximum 12 fencers.
REPRESENTING OHIO STATE
The Scarlet and Gray boast a combined 14 years experience among the seven Buckeyes that competed at the event previously, six of whom competed the last time Ohio State claimed gold in 2012.
The remaining five qualifiers are freshmen, who will make their debut at this event.
Junior Celina Merza earned a fifth place finish at the Midwest Regional Qualifier to represent the No. 2 Ohio State women’s squad in the NCAA Championships. The Wayne, N.J., product garnered a silver medal at the Midwest Conference Championships. This will be Merza’s second appearance at the event, finishing 18th in 2013.
Freshman Alexa Antipas will make her NCAA Championship debut this weekend. The Stony Brook, N.Y., native claimed gold at both the Midwest Conference Championships and the Midwest Regional Qualifier.
Junior Mona Shaito will make her third appearance at the NCAA Championships, finishing third in 2012 and 2013. Shaito, who is from Garland, Texas, took silver at both the Midwest Conference Championships and the Midwest Regional Qualifier.
Freshman Alanna Goldie, who graduated high school a semester early to compete with the Buckeyes, will join Shaito at the championships. Goldie was named Rookie of the Week for her performance at the Northwestern Duals, 17-1, Feb. 1. The Calgary, Alberta, product finished third at the Midwest Regional Qualifiers.
Senior Caroline Piasecka joins the Buckeyes at the event for the fourth time, making her the most seasoned Buckeye competing for the women’s squad. The Oslo, Norway, native finished 15th in the 2011 and 2013 championships, and ninth in 2012. Piasecka was part of CollegeFencing360’s Primetime Performance Weekly Honor Roll for her performance at the NYU Invitational and St. John Invitational and finished tenth at the Midwest Regional Qualifiers.
Freshman Eugenia Falqui joins Piasecka to compete for the first time. The Roman rookie earned a 12th place finish at the Midwest Conference Championships and a fourth place finish at the Midwest Regional Qualifiers.
Senior Rhys Douglas will compete for the third time with the No. 5 men’s squad, competing previously in 2011, finishing 10th, and 2012, finishing 13th. The Scottsdale, Ariz., product claimed gold at both the Midwest Conference Championships and the Midwest Regional Qualifiers.
Freshman Fares Arfa makes his debut at the event after completing high school early to join the Ohio State fencing team. The rookie, from Laval, Quebec, claimed silver at the Midwest Regional Qualifiers.
Senior Zain Shaito will compete in his fourth national championship at this year’s event. The Texas native earned gold in 2012 and was named Ohio State Male Athlete of the Year. In 2011, Shaito claimed the No. 10 spot, while finishing sixth in 2013. He garnered a third place finish at the Midwest Regional Qualifiers.
Junior Chris Colley pairs with Shaito for the third-consecutive year, forming a formidable duo. Colley finished 17th in 2012 and sixth in 2013. The Portland, Ore., product earned a sixth place finish at the Midwest Conference Championships and a fifth place finish at the Midwest Regional Qualifiers.
Senior Kristian Boyadzhiev makes his second appearance at the NCAA Championships, having finished third along with fellow Buckeye Marco Canevari in 2012. Boyadzhiev, a product of Sofia, Bulgaria, claimed gold at both the Midwest Conference Championships and Midwest Regional Qualifiers.
Freshman Iñaki de Guzman joins the Buckeyes for his first appearance at the event. The Fairfax, Va., native claimed silver at the Midwest Regional Qualifiers and earned seventh place at the Midwest Conference Championships.
ABOUT THE NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
Fencers will compete in a round-robin format of five-touch bouts for five rounds. The top-four finishers in each weapon, after round-robin competition, will fence in semifinal 15-touch bouts, with winners fencing to determine first and second places, and the non-advancing fencers tying for third place
An institution’s place finish in the championships will be based on points earned by each individual fencer. A team will be awarded one point for each victory by its student-athletes throughout the entire championship.