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    Wildcats Collect Four Medals at MFC Championships

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM Courtney Dumas won one of four medals for Northwestern Saturday.
    Courtney Dumas won one of four medals for Northwestern Saturday.

    March 2, 2013

    Midwest Fencing Conference Championship Results

    SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Northwestern opened the 15th Midwest Fencing Conference (MFC) Championships in South Bend, Ind. Saturday by capturing four medals during the individual portion of the competition. The Wildcats tallied a silver medal in epée and bronze medals in all three weapons at the Joyce Fieldhouse.

    The Northwestern epée squad got things started by earning three top-five placements and five in the top 10. Junior Dina Bazarbayeva won a silver medal and sophomore Courtney Dumas claimed a share of the bronze. Senior Kate Cavanaugh, the defending gold medalist, tied for fifth place, while freshmen Haley Hart and Helen Foster finished eighth and ninth, respectively.

    Dumas went undefeated in her pool and earned the top seed for the direct elimination tournament. The Cleveland, Ohio, native cruised to the quarterfinals where she drew Hart. After defeating her young teammate, 15-7, Dumas was pitted against Bazarbayeva who had just topped Cavanaugh in an epic battle, 14-12. Bazarbayeva, who earned a share of the fourth seed with an undefeated record in pools, got the best of her NU teammate Dumas, 13-8, before falling to Notre Dame's Ewa Nelip in the championship bout, 15-10.



    Kaitlyn Wallace and Kendrick Mooney placed just outside the top 10 for the Wildcats. Wallace tied for 11th after bowing out against Bazarbayeva in the round of 16. Mooney finished 13th overall after losing against Ohio State's Katarzyna Dabrowa in the round of 16. Dabrowa later tied with Dumas for third place overall.

    Foil was the second weapon to finish Saturday and three-time All-American Dayana Sarkisova was the top finisher for Northwestern. The senior went 5-0 in her pool and secured the eighth seed for direct elimination. Sarkisova defeated her first two opponents by a combined score of 30-3 before knocking off Notre Dame's Sarah Followill, 15-11, to move into the quarterfinals.

    Sarkisova squared off against ND's Madison Zeiss, the top overall seed and the defending MFC champion, in the round of eight. NU's Sarkisova squashed Zeiss' chance of a repeat with a thrilling 15-14 victory to advance to the semifinals. There, the Grand Rapids, Mich., native fenced Ohio State's Mona Shaito. Sarkisova was forced to withdraw from the bout, but she still earned Northwestern's second bronze medal of the day and its third overall.

    The Wildcats placed five other fencers in the top 25 in foil. Freshman Charlotte Sands cracked the top 10 with a ninth-place finish just ahead of sophomore Mary Spohn, who finished 11th. Freshman Jen Yamin ended the day in 13th place, while classmate Mikela Goldstein tied for 14th. Sophomore Tina Umanskiy placed 24th in foil for NU.

    While the open senior women's foil was finishing up, so too was the open senior women's sabre competition. Three 'Cats, seniors Chloe Grainger and Alicia Gurrieri and freshman Cara Franke, each posted spotless 5-0 marks in pool play.

    Gurrieri and Grainger tied for fourth exiting pool play and they rode a collision course to meet on opposite sides of the strip in the quarterfinals. In this exciting bout, Gurrieri, who won the MFC gold medal in 2010, defeated Grainger by a single touch, 15-14. Grainger finished the day in fifth place.

    Gurrieri faced Notre Dame's Lian Osier, the top seed, in the semifinals. Osier won the bout, 15-8, and Gurrieri claimed a bronze medal, Northwestern's fourth of the day.

    Franke finished just outside the top 10, placing 12th at her inaugural MFC Championship. Sophomore Sarah Bruhl placed 20th and Alex Pollock checked in at 34th overall.

    The 2013 MFC Championships continue Sunday with the team events. Northwestern's foil squad captured the silver medal a year ago and epée and sabre each win bronze as the Wildcats fenced their way to a second-place finish. Tomorrow's schedule begins with the women's sabre preliminary rounds at approximately 9:30 a.m. CT.


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