March 26, 2012

SHU Fencing Places 16th at NCAA Championship

                Megan Floyd, Stuart Holmes, and Marty Williams represented the Pioneers at the NCAA Championships last week at the Ohio State University in Columbus , OH.  The NCAA Championship in fencing is a combined championship, with the University with the largest number of both mens and womens bout wins from the round robin part of the tournament being crowned NCAA Champion.  Williams placed 15th in the mens saber competition with 11 victories while both Stuart Holmes in mens foil and Megan Floyd in womens epee and 6 victories and placed 22nd.  The combined 23 wins from Pioneer fencers gave Sacred Heart a 16th place finish, which is where the team placed at last year's NCAA Championship.

                "All of the fields in every weapon were very strong this year," comments head coach Dr. Thomas Vrabel.  "We had a good result this year, especially since for Stuart Holmes and Megan Floyd it was their first time at the Championship.  They both fought well and identified things to work on for next season.  Marty Williams had a great career as a Pioneer.  I know that he wanted to repeat his All American performance from last year but he just came up a bit short.  We will miss Marty, Justin Dion, and our other graduating seniors as we go forward.  We do have  16 of our 18 starters returning from this year's teams, so I look for us to improve again next season.  That is always our mission."

                In the final College Fencing 360 Coaches poll of the season the Sacred Heart University men finished 10th and the women finished 18th.  This is the first time that a Pioneer team finished the year in the top ten and also the first time that both teams were ranked at the end of the year.