Women Fencers Split Weekend Duels

Squad Drops Two in N.Y. Quad Meet

A well-conditioned women's fencing team emerged from a two-day endurance contest this weekend with an even record, downing Trinity and Hunter but falling to Navy and Barnard.

The team might have beaten Trinity by more than the 9-7 score it collected Friday, but the electrical equipment used for scoring touches wasn't working, and Coach Sheldon Berman didn't play his first and second fencers in anticipation of Saturday's six-hour ordeal. "We won but it wasn't much of a victory," Berman said yesterday. "It was ludicrous."

Saturday's quad meet--the first ever for the fencers--was a challenge; the competition in the Big Apple was even stiffer than in New England.

Navy bowled over the Crimson, 13-3, on Saturday, but had to fight for every point. The swordswomen fought even harder in their next match, Barnard, but lost 11-5. Berman noted that the scores were deceptive because Barnard later beat Navy, 10-6.

Kathy Lowry went 2-2 against Barnard, posting the best overall record for the day at six wins, five losses. As the day went on, Lowry got stronger, fencing deftly even in the bouts she lost.

The Crimson found its stride once, however, posting a 15-1 win over Hunter College. Berman said the squad kept Hunter's scrappy "street fighting" style under control in a way it hadn't been able to manage with New England teams earlier this season.

"Our fencers maintained their levels of fencing and totally controlled the match," he said.

Sophomore Carolyn Powell said yesterday the team spent Saturday concentrating on aggressive, clean motions, and hitting with the point, rather than relying on the more defensive play some members of the team favor. "Hunter was a culmination of what we had been doing all day, and this time we won," she said.

The Crimson's even record was indicative of its play over the course of the weekend. "No one was really totally in the pits, but no one was really performing strongly," Berman said.

Berman's detailed critiques between matches helped identify the women's strengths and weaknesses. The weekend, the coach concluded, clearly showed that "when we come up against strong teams we can be equally strong."