Eleven PSU Fencers to Lead Lions in Seventh-Straight Title Quest
STATE COLLEGE, Pa., March 21, 2001 --- Eleven Penn State fencers will clash beginning tomorrow in pursuit of a seventh national title to hang yet another banner from White Building’s rafters.
For the men’s team, Omar Bhutta (Pittsburgh, Pa.) and Nontapat Panchan (Bangkok, Thailand) will compete for the Nittany Lions in the foil division. Daniel Landgren (Bjuv, Sweden) and Adam Wiercioch (Gliwice, Poland) will duel in the epee field .And Mohaymen Rahimi and Michael Tagaki (Fayetteville, Ga.) are the sabre slot.
The women's squad will feature Marta Grochal and Charlotte Walker (Victoria, Australia) in the foil field. Stephanie Eim (Hendersonville, Tenn.) will serve as an epee competitor. And Heather Brosnan (Portland, Ore.) and Stephanie Tam (Coram, N.Y.) are in competition as sabre competitors.
The six-time defending national champions will begin competition Thursday in Racine, Wisc. In addition to winning the previous six national championships, Penn State coach Emmanuil Kaidanov has also mentored national-championship squads in 1990-91.
At last year's competition, Penn State won two individual national championships as Landgren (men's epee) and Jessica Burke (women's epee) as Penn State notched 175 team points. St. John's and Notre Dame tied for second place with 171 points.
Penn State's 11 competitors will compete in a round-robin of 24 touches in five-touch bouts. After the round-robin, the top four finishers in each event will fence in a direct elimination 15-touch bouts to determine the top-four finishers. Teams earn one point per victory by one of their members.
Penn State enters the competition after a bye week following a rigorous, but successful weekend at the Mid-Atlantic/South Regionals, which were hosted by the NCAA at Drew University.