NORTHAMPTON, Mass. – For the third year in a row, senior Joey Rafidi (Los Angeles, Calif.) captured the epee title at The Big One Invitational hosted by Smith College on Saturday. Sophomore Dinis Cheian (Chisinau, Moldova) was tied for third in the epee standings as freshman Benjamin Lin (Beaverton, Ore.) claimed the same spot in the sabre competition.
Rafidi and Cheian recorded undefeated performances in pool play and then met in the semifinals where Rafidi emerged with a score of 15-6. He then secured the crown with a 15-8 victory over his foe from Brown University. Sophomore Giulio Gueltrini (Ravenna, Italy) finished 15th courtesy of a 4-1 ledger in his pool and an appearance in the round of 16. In his intercollegiate debut, Sam Judd (Wyckoff, N.J.) came in 18th after compiling a 5-1 mark and falling to Gueltrini, 15-13, in the second round. Sophomore Deniz Oktay (Istanbul, Turkey) ranked 28th following a 4-2 performance in his pool and a second-round battle with Cheian. Freshman Marshall Craft (Charlotte, N.C.) rounded out the squad in 62nd place with a ledger of 1-5.
Lin went unscathed in sabre pool play and after a first-round bye, advanced to the semifinals where he fell by a 15-11 margin. Seniors Ehsan Izadmehr (Wayne, N.J.) and Luke O'Malley (Malibu, Calif.) went 4-1 in their respective pools before entering the bracket and finishing 15th and 22nd overall. Sophomore Laphonchai Jirachuphun (Chantaburi, Thailand) ranked 32nd after going 2-2 in his pool and earning a spot in the second round while junior Adam Hood (Cambridge, Mass.) was tied for 43rd as his day came to an end in the first round at the hands of Izadmehr. Freshman Kyle Saleeby (Destin, Fla.) completed the contingent in 66th place with a tally of 1-5.
Sophomore Scott Robinson (Califon, N.J.) led the foil unit by finishing 14th on the strength of a 4-1 pool record and an appearance in the round of 16. Freshman Christopher McKinney (Concord, Mass.) and junior David Wyrobnik (Frankfurt am Main, Germany) were 21st and 26th as they bowed out in the second round after compiling ledgers of 4-1 and 4-2 in round robin action. Senior Jim Clark (Falls Church, Va.), sophomore Dongliang Zhou (Hangzhou, China), and freshman Israel Donato-Ridgley (Round Rock, Texas) wrapped up the competition with rankings of 56th, 57th, and 73rd.
Next up for MIT will the first Northeast Fencing Conference competition of the year to be hosted at Brown on Saturday, Nov. 16.