Songdo, Korea – Brown fencers took their weapons abroad this August, traveling to SUNY Korea, a campus of the State University of New York, to compete in the Korea-USA Elite Fencing Invitational (KUEFI). The squad competed against fencers from ten Korean and nine U.S. universities, facing opponents in all three weapons. The annual tournament serves to promote fencing in both the U.S. and Korea, and to expose international fencers to Korean culture.
"This was a fantastic opportunity to extend the reach of collegiate fencing while helping to unite many different programs," said head coach Atilio Tass. "The friendship and comradery between the different schools was amazing."
"It was a great way to start our season," said junior Christina Johantgen (Garrison, N.Y.). "I got to meet a lot of people on other teams while our squad had a chance to get some early work in."
In the team competition, Team USA fell to Team Korea by a narrow 51-60 margin. The Bears were well represented in the men's foil by sophomore Barrett Weiss (Barrington, R.I.), who advanced to the quarterfinals after winning his bout 15-14. Weiss finished 7th overall in the men's foil, while junior Joshua Grill (Pittsburgh, Pa.) placed 30th. Junior Kathryn Hawrot (Barrington, R.I.) took 19th in women's foil.
In the men's epee competition, senior Kelly McGuire (Park City, Utah) finished in 23rd place. Senior Tanya Nguyen (Roswell, Ga.) took 19th in the women's draw, while senior Kathy Nguyen (Roswell, Ga.) and sophomore Hailey Huddleston (New York, N.Y.) took 22nd and 23rd, respectively.
Two fencers competed in the sabre competition—Johantgen placed 15th for the women, and senior Brandon Tomasso (Vineland, N.J.) finished 21st.
Brown joined Stanford, Penn, Northwestern, Princeton, Columbia, Yale, Notre Dame, Cornell and Brandeis against 11 different universities from Korea.
The Bears will kick off their season with captain's practices this September.