MADISON, NJ -- History was made this weekend. The Ridge High School Fencing Teams were very productive at the prestigious Santelli and Cetrulo Tournaments. While the Boys Team improved from last year by finishing second overall, the Girls Team shocked the fencing community by winning first place in an unprecedented manner.
At the Santelli Tournament, at Drew University which hosted 51 teams, the Girls team placed first overall in the three weapon championship after all three squads, Epee, Saber and Foil, swept the field -- a first in the 40 year old tournament.
In the first round junior Diya Kulkarni and freshman Liz Chan were undefeated, while senior and team captain Arianna Minassian only lost one bout. These 20 wins placed them in the top flight pool for round two. In the second round the girls continued to dominate with squad captain Kulkarni and Minassian going 5-2, while Chan and senior Jillian Yao, who subbed two times, went undefeated. Their total of 17 wins earned them first place over rival Montgomery.
The sabre squad, consisting of senior and squad captain Nastassja Kuznetsova, junior Andrea Tirado and freshman Zoe Kim, finished the first round almost undefeated with Tirado only losing her first bout. These 20 wins likewise moved the squad into the top flight pool. In the second round, the squad went undefeated! Their 21 wins were eight more than the second place finish.
Freshmen Erica Chang and Lucy Liao and junior Liz Yugov also finished the first round with only one loss from Chang. Their 17 wins brought the foilists to the top flight pool in the second round. The competition proved to be very fierce. Still, Liao’s perfect 7 wins, Chang’s 5 wins and squad captain Yugov’s 2 wins, were just enough to place first. With the three first place weapon finishes, the Girls Team brought home the big trophy!
At the Cetrulo Tournament, with 55 teams, the Boys team placed second overall in the three weapon championship after their Foil squad brought home the first place trophy, their Epee squad placed sixth and their Saber squad 13
Trying to repeat last year’s first place finish, the Boys Foil team did not disappoint. Freshmen Advaith Rege and Ryan Shadpoor along with junior and squad captain Eric Liu dominated their weapon. Und, they moved to the top flight pool in the second round. Rege and Liu went 6-1 and Shadpoor contributed three wins. These 15 wins were enough to earn them first place once again.
Sophomores Forest Huang and Allen Marakov and junior Clark Kokenge looked unstoppable in the first round with a perfect 21 win finish. However the top flight pool proved challenging. There squad captain Kokenge had 3 wins, Allen had 2 had 5 wins and Forest had 4 wins. With these 9 wins the boys finished 6th in their weapon.
Senior and squad captain Jack Browne, junior Casper Mika and sophomore Nicholas Ge finished the first round with 15 wins which was not enough to make the top flight pool in the second round, placing them in the 9 - 16th bracket. In the second round, junior Brock Martynowski was able to substitute. At the end, the saber boys finished with 11 wins, with both Mika and Ge finishing 5 -2. These 11 wins gave the squad a thirteenth place finish.