BY LOUIS FREY
The Sacred Heart University women’s fencing team is looking to add more fencers to their roster. As of now, the team does not have a full squad, and head coach Yury Molchan is looking for fencers who possess passion, commitment, and fight.
For Molchan, the recruitment process involves watching videos of fencers on YouTube. He’ll then conduct background research on specific fencers who stand out to him and will then attend their competitions in person to see their skills in real bouts.
“We need extra people to keep the team going, which is the first reason we’re recruiting,” said Molchan. “The second reason is for results, to make the team better.”
The team came in second in the New England Intercollegiate Fencing Conference (NEIFC) Championships last season behind Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). MIT won 93 out of the 112 bouts, while Sacred Heart won 76.
The sabre squad placed third in the squad competition in a three-way tiebreaker to MIT and Wellesley College. The epee squad finished second to MIT with 30 victories out of 38 bouts.
Molchan is also looking for fencers with interpersonal skills.
“We like someone who always pitches in, someone who is always putting their foot forward, and has a positive attitude,” said senior Hasoni Austin, who participates in sabre bouts. “We need someone who wants to do the best for the team and puts everyone else on the team first.”
Austin also says the team needs to advertise their recruitment process more in order for it to grow.
“On the Sacred Heart Athletics Instagram page, there is no presence of us at all,” said Austin.
Even though the team is focusing on recruiting, it hasn’t changed their season goal of winning the NEIFC Championship.
“We always give it our all,” said senior Samantha Abbott. “That’s my goal, as this is my last season to do this.”
The team’s season begins next month on Oct. 28, at the Big One Invitational at Smith College in Northampton, Mass.