Friday, April 3, 2009
CCHS boys and girls fencing teams excel again
This year’s fencing team, under the direction of coaches David Blake and Ariana Klinkov, had another successful season. Seniors Avery Newton, Sarah Kindler, Katharine Price and Carlisle’s Amanda Peterson and Kelsey Erickson carried the girls team to an undefeated season. Meanwhile, seniors Matt Solomon, Harry Greene, Chris Curran, and Carlisle’s Raffi Hsieh, Nathan Hsieh, and Eric Luby led the boys to a record of 11-2.
Having won several State titles in previous years, the bar was set high for this winter’s squad. But despite past success, the team knew that there was always room for improvement. “We started the season with a fairly dedicated group of people,” said senior Harry Greene, “but we ended it with a strong, united team of athletes who shared the belief that success can be earned through hard work and dedication.” Greene emphasized that the team’s greatest strength was its sense of unity, which was lacking in previous years.
Carlisle senior Amanda Peterson added that the girls’ undefeated season was particularly rewarding after the team suffered some heartbreaking losses the year before. Notable performances at States for the boys included Harry Greene finishing third in the state for sabre, Paul O’Neil placing second and Nathan Hsieh placing sixth in epee, and Josh Philippou placing sixth in foil. On the girls’ side, Juliana Kulik, Avery Newton, and Alex Knobel finished first, second and fifth respectively in the foil; Amanda Peterson and Noa Karr finished first and fourth in epee, and Julia Hisey, Madison Douglas, and Aletha Smith finished first, second and fourth in sabre.
Part of the reason why fencing has gained popularity at CCHS is because of its no-experience-necessary policy. This opens up an opportunity for high school students of all ages and allows incoming freshmen to be part of a tightly knit team. Although many varsity fencers at CCHS pick up fencing when entering high school, it is not uncommon for colleges to recruit them for their abilities. This may be partly due to the options for training and practicing both outside of school and during the off-season. For example, Coaches David Blake and Ariana Klinkov run the Prise de Fer Fencing Club in North Billerica.
Although both the boys and girls teams will graduate many of their starters this year, the next generation of fencers is ready to step up and continue the tradition. Carlisle captains Ryan Symonds and Julia Hisey are both working hard to encourage team members to fence during the off-season and maintain the devotion seen during the 2008-09 season. Carlisle team members this year included Eric Luby, Alex Kinmonth, Raffi Hsieh, Nathan Hsieh, Cam Davis, Ryan Symonds, Julia Hisey, Juliana Kulik, Alex Knobel, Ileana Wu, Amanda Peterson and Kelsey Erickson. ∆
© 2009 The Carlisle Mosquito