GARWOOD, NJ - Governor Livingston girls fencing lost to Oak Knoll at its meet at Advance Fencing and Fitness Academy on Tuesday January 7, by a final score of 15-12. 

Prior to the meet Senior Victoria Beke explained the strategy the team would be following. “We’re going to try to just be as clean as possible, with our bladework, with our footwork, just use the basics that we’ve practiced countless times during our practices.”

In the first bout of the meet, senior sabre fencer Tamar Novik lost 5-1 to Oak Knoll’s Abigail Whittall. However, sabre fencers Cierra Blair and Michelle Hom won their bouts, making the meet score 2-1. Hom said, “I was definitely nervous going in. I am happy I started the first round with a win.”

Sign Up for Berkeley Heights Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

In the first two foil bouts, senior Julia Shea and sophomore Elena Timmermann lost to Oak Knoll’s Lauren Pacicco and Leticia Sefia. Freshman Waverly Lorne won the third bout 5-0 against Oak Knoll’s Emely Abreu, tying the meet score 3-3. Epee fencers Victoria Beke, Emily Berkow, and Ritika Sinha-Chaudhuri, lost their three bouts, bring the meet score to 6-3. 

To start off the second round of sabre bouts, Novik fenced close bout against Oak Knoll's Paula Sefia, ultimately winning 5-4. In the foil bouts, Timmermann made an amazing comeback. After giving up three touches, she took a timeout to get advice from the coaches and fellow fencers, and went on to win 5-3. 

In the second round of epee bouts, both Beke and Sinha-Chaudhuri won their bouts 5-1. In the final bout of the second round, Berkow fenced Oak Knoll’s Kelly Fitzpatrick. After three minutes of fencing they were tied 3-3. Priority was randomly assigned to Berkow, but Fitzpatrick made the first touch, winning the bout.

Going into the third round, Oak Knoll was ahead 10-8. Novik and Blair won the first two sabre bouts, bringing the meet score to a tie, 10-10. In the first epee bout, in a bout against Beke, Oak Knoll’s Olivia Gaston clinched the meet for her team. 

Despite the loss, GL ended the meet on a high note. In the very last bout, Freshman Pavni Bhardwha won her first bout of her career, beating Oak Knoll’s Grace McCaghey 5-4. 

The team will compete in dual meets every Tuesday and Thursday in January and February and in tournaments, such as Santelli and Cetrulo at Drew University.