Monday, May 09, 2011

Southeast Section Championships

"Well damn."

That was my first thought as I accepted the fact that I lost my first DE in the round of 16 to a good man and fencer from an area club. I needed to only defeat him to make the round of 8 and qualify for Summer Nationals in Reno.

My second thought was, "At least I don't have to drop hundreds of dollars to go to Reno. Reno sucks." Reno does suck, but I thought I had that bout well in hand.

The day started off well enough. In pools I first faced a new but skilled club mate and beat him 5-0. Thanks to a last minute ejection, I was once again in a pool of 5 - but I found a way to win against all my other opponents. A record of 4-0 put me 4th in the seedings and my own tree to the round of 4 (and renewing my B).

For those of you following along at home, this is the second event (and weekend) in a row I have gone undefeated in pools in an A2 event. The last time I was able to string together such success was when I was battling in local D and Under Epee (D2/C2) events.

However, this is not a local A2 with a few tough guys and a ton of Unrated fencers. The Section Championship is notoriously top heavy with the best fencers from around the Southeast United States, which meant that strong A fencers managed to lose one in the pools; after pool seeding is not a guarantor of success.

So after all this effort, I still have not managed to renew my B, and I will not be fencing in D1A competition in Reno.

After publicly pledging my allegiance to the inside of a bottle, one of my coaches took me aside for a chat. He pointed out that while I fell short of my high, but achievable, goals - in the process I became a much better fencer. While that is not its own reward, it is something to be recognized. Also, though I didn't qualify, 10th place is the best result I have posted at Sectionals ever.

Losing sucks, but the season rolls on. There are some fun locals coming up, including a fencing event at Firkin and Gryphon this week. I will have many chances to renew my B, or even get my A before the calendar year comes to a close.

My new goal is to get my A in epee before December 31, 2011. Wish me luck and come aboard!

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