Orts Wins Third Regional Title
SAN ANTONIO, Texas -- Lucas Orts won his third NCAA West Regional men's foil title and was among three Stanford fencers to become 'recommended qualifiers' into the NCAA Championships on Saturday.
Haley Koo, a sophomore, earned her second NCAA berth by winning the women's foil at the NCAA West Regionals at University of Incarnate Word's McDermott Center. And Aidan Kung placed second in the men's epee. They finished in alloted spots that would indicate qualification to the NCAA's, but they officially can't be confirmed until Tuesday after a meeting of regional coaches.
Six other Cardinal are in prime position for two NCAA at-large invitations in each weapon and those spots also will be announced Tuesday.
Men's fencers in contention for those spots are Noah Matricciani (fourth in saber), Draper Dayton (fifth in foil), and Robin Cheong (sixth in epee). Each was two spots from automatic qualifying.
Women's fencers in contention are Hanna Lee (third in epee), Charlotte He (fourth in saber), and Sofia Raso (fourth in foil). Only the top two in each women's weapon advanced automatically.
Orts, a fifth-year senior, went 9-3, earning the same record as Nestor Levin of Air Force. Orts defeated Levin, 5-2, but earned the No. 1 spot on the number of hits over 12 bouts, going plus-25 to Levin's plus-23.
Orts also won regional titles in 2019 and 2020. There were no regionals last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Koo went 8-2, to a 7-3 record for runner-up Rafaella Gomes of UC San Diego.
Kung went 5-3 to match that of winner Matthew Han of Air Force. Kung beat Han, 5-4, but Han earned the hit-differential tiebreaker. Han was plus-8 to Kung's plus-4.
Madeline Liao, Stanford's three-time regional foil champion, will be waiting out at-large selections. She placed fifth with a 6-4 record. If this is her final collegiate competition, she closed strong by beating UCSD's Kyra Wu, 5-2, and finishing with a 5-1 victory over Incarnate Word's Maia Slowinski, in her final two bouts.
Lee, the 2020 regional champion, was close to placing second in the epee, but for a 5-4 loss to Air Force's Jocelyn Ratzlaff that determined the second automatic qualifying spot.
Incarnate Word recognized seniors from all four schools, including Stanford's nine: Cheong, Kathy Hu, Kung, Lee, Liao, Matricciani, Orts, Sophia Sanchez, and Kevin Tu.
The same four schools – Stanford, Air Force, Incarnate Word, and UCSD – compete again on Sunday in the same venue, this time in the first Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships. Competition begins at 7 a.m. PT.
The NCAA Championships are March 24-27 at Notre Dame.
Stanford coach Lisa Posthumus and seniors.
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NCAA West Regionals
At McDermott Center, San Antonio
Winners and all Stanford
Saber – 1, Shawn Kim (UCSD) 9-2; 4, Noah Matricciani (Stanford) 7-4; 5, Neo Kounalakis (Stanford) 7-4; 6, Eugene Ko (Stanford) 6-5; 7, Donghwan Park (Stanford) 5-5.
Foil – 1, Lucas Orts (Stanford) 9-3; 5, Draper Dayton (Stanford) 7-5; 11, Joshua Kang (Stanford) 4-8.
Epee – 1, Matthew Han (Air Force) 5-3 (3-1 in first round); 2, Aidan Kung (Stanford) 5-3 (3-1 in first round); 6, Robin Cheong (Stanford) 4-4 (2-2 in first round); 14, Evan Rayle (Stanford) 0-4 in first round; 15, Kevin Tu (Stanford) 0-4 in first round.
Saber – 1, Sarah Shen (UCSD) 8-2; 4, Charlotte He (Stanford) 7-3; 5, Joy Yun (Stanford) 7-3; 7, Jeanette Han (Stanford) 4-6; 8, Zhiyin Lin (Stanford) 4-6.
Foil – 1, Haley Koo (Stanford) 8-2; 4, Sofia Raso (Stanford) 6-4; 5, Madeline Liao (Stanford) 6-4; 9, Sophia Sanchez (Stanford) 4-6.
Epee – 1, Rylie Rueda (Incarnate Word) 9-1; 3, Hanna Lee (Stanford) 7-3.