Nov. 1, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill. -- After several weeks of individual competition, the Northwestern Wildcats will come together for the first time this season for its first dual meet of the season on Saturday, November 2 at historic Patten Gymnasium.
Beginning at 8 a.m. Saturday, the Wildcats will fence squads from Indiana, Chicago, Michigan State, Michigan, Purdue, Lawrence, Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota and Bradley. Each round will take approximately 45 minutes with the 11th and final dual to take place at about 3:15 p.m.
Under the direction of head coach Laurie Schiller in his 37th season at the helm, the 'Cats youthful 2013-14 roster features only one returning senior, but plenty of valuable experience starting with a pair of 2013 All-Americans. Northwestern's roster features a total of 16 returning veterans and 14 talented newcomers.
Senior Dina Bazarbayeva, Northwestern's team captain, is a two-time All-America honoree having most recently finished 12th in women's epée at the NCAA Fencing Championship in her home state of Texas in March.
In her second trip to the NCAA Championship last spring, junior Courtney Dumas captured her first All-America recognition with a ninth-place finish, also in women's epée. The Cleveland, Ohio, native has already been picking hardware this fall as she earned gold medals at both the USFA Burton Open in September and the USFA Remenyik Open last weekend at the Henry Crown Sports Pavilion.
Northwestern's epée squad also boasts talented sophomore Juliana Barrett. In May, Barrett returned to her native South Africa where she won that nation's national championship.
The NU foil squad graduated one of four four-time All-Americans in program history in the spring in Dayana Sarkisova, but it still has plenty of fresh faces ready to step up and compete for the Wildcats. With 80 career wins to her credit, squad captain Mary Spohn is ready to assume a prominent leadership role this year. She'll be bolstered in the lineup at times with a talented trio of sophomores. Mikela Goldstein, Charlotte Sands and Jen Yamin combined to win more than 220 bouts as freshmen a year ago.
The youngest lineup for the Wildcats this season figures to be in sabre, where sophomore captain Cara Franke has the most collegiate experience for Northwestern. The unit features several talented newcomers, as well, including freshman Alisha Gomez-Shah, who, like Dumas, won gold at both the Burton Open and Remenyik Open this season.
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