No. 7 Temple fencing wins four of five bouts at Temple Invitational

Temple defeated Johns Hopkins University, St. John’s University, Penn and Princeton University on Sunday at McGonigle Hall.

The 2019 Temple Invitational featured fencing teams from universities including Johns Hopkins, Princeton, St. Johns, and University of Pennsylvania. | ALEX PATERSON-JONES / THE TEMPLE NEWS

Temple University fencing went 4-1 at the Temple Invitational on its Senior Day on Sunday at McGonigle Hall.

Temple’s only loss in the competition came against Penn State, which is ranked No. 4 in the Women’s Coaches Poll. No. 7 Temple lost to Penn State, 16-11. The sabre squad won 5-4, but the foil and epee squads lost, 6-3.

“We’ve always wanted to get Penn State,” junior sabre Kerry Plunkett said. “We’ve been able to almost get there, but not quite reach the mark. I think it’s much more of a mental thing than a capability thing. We’re capable of it every year, but we just get a little bit too excited.”

Senior epee Ally Micek was one of five seniors honored on Senior Day. Temple’s other four seniors are sabres Blessing Olaode and Jessica Rockford, foil Auset Muhammad and epee Fiona Fong.

“It was a big send off [for the seniors],” coach Nikki Franke said. “It was the last dual meet. They all had their parents here. That made it even more special.”

Micek praised the team’s performance after the Penn State loss.

“The Penn State loss was a little tough,” Micek said. “We came back and got it together for the rest of the day. It was just amazing being back on home turf and competing with my team for the last round.”

After the Penn State loss, Temple (25-8) won all four of its remaining competitions.

Temple beat Johns Hopkins University, 20-7. The epee squad won 8-1 and the foil and sabre squads won 6-3. Sophomore foil Megan Ross finished undefeated against Johns Hopkins and 4-1 overall.

The Owls then defeated St. John’s University, 14-13. The sabre and foil squads won, while the epee squad lost.

Temple defeated two ranked teams, Penn and Princeton University. The Owls defeated No. 9 Penn, 17-10. The foil squad only dropped one match, while the sabre squad won 5-4. The epee squad lost 5-4.

The Owls then defeated No. 10 Princeton, 16-11. The foil squad won eight of its bouts, while the sabre won seven bouts. The epee squad lost 8-1.

Plunkett led the sabre squad with a 10-1 record. Plunkett had two wins against Penn State and her only loss of the day came against the Nittany Lions.

Freshman foil Aryana Abtin finished the competition with a 9-2 record. Abtin went undefeated against the Quakers and finished 2-1 against the Nittany Lions.

Micek led the epee squad with an 8-4 record and finished 2-1 against Penn.

“It was a big send off [for the seniors],” coach Nikki Franke said. “It was the last dual meet. They all had their parents here. That made it even more special.”

In its next competition, Temple will compete in the National Intercollegiate Women’s Fencing Association Championships on Saturday in Madison, New Jersey. The Owls have won 22 consecutive NIWFA Championships.

“This season, every competition has prepared us for this conference championship,” Micek said. “We’re going in mentally and physically strong. I think we’re ready to kill it.”

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