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Women’s Fencing Travels to Tradition Tournament for First Road Trip of Season

The Crimson looks to remain unbeaten at the Tradition Tournament (photo courtesy Gil Talbot).

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The Harvard women's fencing team will make its first road trip of the season when it travels to Fairfield, Conn., Sunday, Dec. 8 for the Tradition Tournament. The Crimson will face New York, Penn State, Sacred Heart, Temple and Vassar on the strip. Fencing will commence at 10 a.m. at the Pitt Center.

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Last Time Out
Harvard opened its season with a 22-5 victory over Tufts Thursday, Dec. 5 at the Malkin Athletic Center. The Crimson (1-0) continued its dominance at home winning its 34th-straight match in Cambridge, a streak that extends to the 2002-03 season. The win also stretches Harvard's undefeated streak against the Jumbos to 21 matches.

Alexandra Kiefer led five unbeaten fencers against the cross-town squad. The senior foil fencer allowed zero touches against in each of her bouts to go 3-0.

Related Link: Women's Fencing Downs Tufts, 22-5, in Season Opener

Unbeaten
Since Harvard women's fencing began in 1975, the Crimson has seen 51 opponents on the strip. Harvard has not dropped a match to 28 of its all-time competitors to hold unbeaten records against 54.9 percent of its all-time foes. The Crimson will attempt to remain undefeated against New York, Sacred Heart and Vassar at the Tradition Tournament.

About NYU
The Violets campaign began with a 22-5 win over Drew before falling to Stevens 20-7 to carry a 1-1 record into the tournament. NYU is led by freshmen Julianna Tobin and Tiffany Liu. Tobin, a sabre fencer, is the lone Violet to be unbeaten with a 2-0 mark while Liu has posted a 4-2 record in the foil. Alyssa Parkhurst paces New York's epeeists as the junior sits at 4-2.

All-Time Versus the Violets
Harvard has met NYU on the strip 15 times since the series began in 1993 and has not dropped a single match to hold a 15-0 record. The Crimson last defeated the Violets 23-4 on Dec. 1, 2013.

About Penn State
The Nittany Lions opened their season with a strong showing at the Temple Open Oct. 25-26. Desree Ortega-Furgeson and Jessie Radnovich paced Penn State's performance as the freshman took home first in the foil and epee, respectively. Junior Elizabeth Rapp's paced the Nitty Lion sabre fencers with a tie for third.

All-Time Versus the Nittany Lions
In a series that began in 2008, Harvard trails Penn State, 5-10. The two programs last met on Jan. 26, 2013 when the Nittany Lions narrowly edged the Crimson, 14-13, to record their second straight victory over Harvard.

About Sacred Heart
After two weekend competitions and 13 opponents, Sacred Heart holds a 11-2 record only dropping matches to Cornell, 17-10, and Brown, 14-13. The Pioneers victories have been propelled by the young sabre squad that includes freshman Julia Green who has won all of her 39 bouts except two. Sophomore Mia Volpe and senior Natalie Rossetti lead the epee fencers with 34 and 31 wins, respectively, while sophomore CJ McCarter paces the foil fencers.

All-Time Versus the Pioneers
Harvard sports a perfect 10-0 mark in the all-time series, which dates back to 2001. Last season, the Crimson bested the Pioneers, 19-8.

About Temple
The Owls make the trip to Fairfield, Conn., for their first dual meet of the season. Temple has sent fencers to individual tournaments highlighted by sabre fencer junior Tiki Kastor's first place showing at the 34th Temple Open. Seniors Ephiphany Georges and Kimberly Howell look to lead the foil and epee squad, respectively.

All-Time Versus the Owls
The Crimson looks to build upon its three match winning streak and take the lead in the all-time series with Temple as the meetings are tied, 4-4. 

About Vassar
The Brewers enter competition after going 2-2 their home opener, the Matt Lampell Hudson River Invitational. Freshman Elsa Stoff leads Vassar's (5-7) foil squad with a 24-6 record while classmate Olivia Weiss' 16-6 mark paces the Brewers' epeeist. Junior Kathleen Konno has added 16 wins for the sabre squad.

All-Time Versus the Brewers
In a series that dates back to 1985, Harvard has not dropped a match against Vassar to boast a 11-0 record.

What's to Come
The Crimson will return to action following the New Year when Harvard makes the trip to Queens, N.Y., for the St. John's Invitational, Jan. 26.