SIFA 2024

2.17.24 – 2.18.24

Women’s Epee

On February 17, William & Mary women’s epee defended their title as 2022 and 2023 SIFA champions. William & Mary women’s epee started Saturday out strong. In their individual event, Rebekah ‘Opal’ Gresham ’25 Anna ‘Lotus’ Saal ’27 both came out of pools with 5 victories each while Sarah ‘Tarot’ Gresham ’25 swept her pool with 6 victories. These three strong records allowed all three wepeeists to advance into the direct elimination round of only eight fencers. In the round of 8, tragic William on Mary violence occurred when Opal defeated Lotus to advance to the semi-finals and face Tarot. Tarot went on to the finals where she gained a decisive victory and the gold medal. Wepee’s strong performance in the individual event awarded them first seed in the team event, advancing them directly into the semifinals. From there, they defeated the University of Florida reaching the necessary 5 victories to advance with only 1 loss. Then, Opal, Tarot, and Lotus fought back from an initial 2 losses against the University of Georgia to win 5-3 in the finals. As if that weren’t impressive enough, this isn’t the first SIFA victory for W&M women’s epee. Opal and Tarot have led the team to victory for the third year in a row. Wepee is returning to Williamsburg victorious, with a bronze and gold medal in the individual event and 3 gold medals for their team performance.

Women’s Foil

On February 18, the Women’s Foil team won first place at the SIFA championships. Sarah Terpenning ‘27 and Kate Ingle ‘27 tied for 12th place, while Lucy Kasper ‘24 took gold in an intense bout against an Emory fencer. Following individual tournaments, the three girls pooled their skills together in the team tournaments. They managed to keep their cool as they fought through tough competitors, illegal calls, and unfair referees, ultimately leading to a victorious win for gold. This resulted in an overall SIFA win for the William & Mary Women’s Foil team, making it the first wins for freshmen Sarah and Kate, as well as senior Lucy Kasper’s final medal at SIFA champs.

Women’s Sabre

Women’s Sabre was victorious as they flew down the strips at SIFA! Karino Gibson ‘24, Angela ‘Luna’ Liu ‘25, and Debbie ‘Prism’ Ho ‘26, primarily foilists, tried their hand at sabre for the first time in a collegiate tournament. They each claimed their first sabre varsity wins.  The three fencers developed their understanding and sabre senses throughout the tournament and ultimately came in fifth place overall! 

Men’s Epee

Men’s Épée, comprised of Jake Schapiro ’24, Nolan Coughlin ’25, Armin Bagha ’24, took home gold at SIFA this year! Individually, Jake won fifth place, Armin came in second, and Nolan got first, with Nolan and Armin fencing off in an epic finals match. Deploying his parry 4-riposte against fleches, Jake won bouts against Emory and Kennesaw State. Nolan used his lightning reflexes to hit his opponents before they even had time to react. Coming through at the end, Armin used his speed and long reach to win the tie-breaking match against Kennesaw to get the team first place. Men’s Épée is thrilled with their victory and eagerly looking forward to MACFA Champs. 

Men’s Foil

Men’s foil brought the heat to Atlanta and the gold back to Williamsburg. Nick ‘Osiris’ Reeder ‘24, Jack ‘Yeti’ Bratton ‘24, and Thomas ‘Vice’ Mahnken ‘24 came first in Men’s Foil contributing to the overall William & Mary SIFA win. Yeti’s decisive distance also delivered him the individual gold medal! Osiris’s methodical marches cleared the way to a 5th place finish in individuals. Vice’s powerful parries clutched the final win against Emory to bring William & Mary gold. Men’s foil is looking forward to a rest week followed by MACFA champs!

Men’s Sabre

Men’s Sabre started off the season with an impressive performance in Atlanta earning each squad member their first medal at a collegiate tournament! Consisting of Connor “Lancelot” Cassidy ‘25, Evan “Duke” Jackson ‘25, and Ryan “Chronos” Rauscher ‘27, William and Mary’s Sabre squad fought tooth and nail against their fellow southern schools for a second place finish in the Southern Intercollegiate Fencing Association. Earlier in the day, Lance’s signature lockouts scored point after point for the team securing the second seed for the team event. In individuals, Duke’s tactical decision making and expert box actions earned him an 8th place finish, and Chronos’ lightning fast reflexes, Olympian-level blade work, and superhuman agility triumphantly carried him to the podium, bringing home bronze. Combined, the three showed off men’s Sabre as a powerful presence on the strip and a definite force to be reckoned with!