MATCH OF THE WEEK Fencing Competes at IFA Champ; Kopylov Given Cointe Award

The men’s fencing team finished ninth out of eleven teams this weekend in the Intercollegiate Fencing Association Championship, the oldest collegiate championship in the country. The épée team led the charge with an eighth-place finish, followed by foil (ninth) and sabre (10th). The women’s team finished tenth out of twelve teams, and the foil team posted the highest ranking for MIT as it took sixth place for the second year in a row.

Igor Kopylov ’09 was the lone Division III recipient of the Georges L. Cointe Award, given to an individual who excels in high-level competition with excellence in sportsmanship. He is MIT’s second consecutive winner of this award and third overall, as Trevor T. Chang ’07 was honored last year and Guy P. Pommares ’71 was chosen in 1969-70.

On the women’s side, Cordelia S. Link ’10 led the way by capturing fifth (6-5) in the top foil pool en route to an overall fifth-place ranking and the highest finish by a Division III competitor. She defeated Mina Zargham from Princeton University, 15-10, before falling to the eventual champion, Misha Goldfeder of Harvard University, 15-9. In the “C” pool, Jenna G. Caldwell ’11 captured fifth with a 4-1 outing while Chun Li ’08 was ninth with a 3-3 mark. Lindley C. Graham ’10 rounded out the group in twelfth place and record of 3-8 in the “B” pool.

Yuhsin Chen ’08 finished ninth in the individual sabre competition and sixth in the “A” pool as the top Division III performer with a record of 6-5. Elena A. Tatarchenko ’11 went 4-7 (ninth place) in the “C” pool while Laura Evans notched a total of 1-10 (12th) in the “B” pool. Overall, the sabre team captured tenth place.

Zhenya Gu ’08 recorded the best performance for the épée team with a 4-6 ledger and an eighth-place finish in the “B” pool as the squad claimed 11th place. Sophie M. Monahan ’11 (3-2, ninth place) and Kristin D. Kuhn ’11 (1-5, 13th) represented the Engineers in the “C” pool as Stephanie H. Shin ’10 wrapped up the competition with a twelfth place ranking and a total of 1-10.

In the men’s competition, Kopylov finished eleventh in the individual sabre competition, falling to the eventual runner-up, Alex Diacou of Columbia University, 15-9. In the top qualifying pool, he placed fourth with a record of 6-4. Maximilian L. Brand ’11 claimed ninth place (2-8) in the “B” pool while Matthew W. Farrell ’08 took eleventh (1-9) in the “C” pool.

Spencer R. Sugimoto ’08 led the charge for the foil team as he ranked thirteenth overall and eighth in the “A” pool with a record of 4-6. Sebastian Castro ’08 and Richard C. LaGrandier ’11 finished tenth and eleventh, respectively, with identical marks of 1-4. In the “C” pool, Benjamin T. Switala ’09 went 2-8 en route to a tenth place finish.

Gabriel A. Chan ’09 posted a 5-5 record en route to an eighth-place ranking in the épée “B” pool while Matt L. Gethers ’09 finished tenth in the top tier, going 2-8. In the épée “C” pool, Jeremy S. Hurwitz ’08 placed seventh with a record of 4-6.

The field included Boston College, Brandeis University, Brown University, Columbia University, Harvard University, New York University, University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, Vassar College and Yale University.

Why this is Match of the Week:

The fencing teams, coming off their victories in the New England Championship, performed well in this national competition, representing MIT well against formidable Division I opponents.