Culver Academies will be hosting the Midwest High School Open on Saturday, Dec. 12, and it couldn’t come at a better time for the CGA foil team. With the entire foursome returning from last year’s Great Lakes Conference-winning team, and helping CGA capture the overall women’s title, the foil team has picked up where it left off.
Leading the team is junior captain Beatrice Verrecchia ’17 (Firenze, Italy). She won the foil competition at Catholic Memorial High School, Waukesha, Wis., on Nov. 21. That was preceded by a victories at the Stevenson High School Invitational, Lincolnshire, Ill., on Nov. 14, and the Lowell (Ill.) Pre-Season Invitational, on Nov. 7. She went undefeated in November, finishing with a 31-0 record.
In the Catholic Memorial meet, two other members – sophomore Rebecca Sun (Overland Park, Kan.) and junior Eunjeong “Emily” Hur (Busan, South Korea) finished third and ninth, respectively, in the field of 58 competitors. After spending her junior year studying abroad in China, senior alternate Hannah Boland (Culver) finished 13th. Junior Yu Jin Lee (Seoul, South Korea) finished 17th.
In the first meet of the season conducted Oct. 24 at Northwestern University, Evanston, Ill., Verrecchia finished fifth in the Cadet (U17) classification. She also finished in the Top 16 in U20, which included a field flooded with college fencers from Northwestern, Wayne State, Notre Dame, and Lawrence University. Those results improved her USA Fencing Region 2 rank to fifth in U17 and eighth in U20. Region 2 covers all of the Midwest.
This past weekend, the New Trier (Ill.) Duals staged the southern conference teams competing against the central conference teams. Culver women’s foil was a perfect 4-0. CGA beat New Trier, Maine West, Deerfield/Highland Park, and Evanston Township.
Now, with Culver hosting one of the largest high school tournaments in the country, the girls are looking forward to matching their skills against many of the top high school-aged fencers in the region. Last year, competitors represented Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Michigan.
Verrecchia said the girls don’t have their goals written down “but we talk it up all the time.” Each meet is broken down into a series of incremental steps. The first step is for everyone to finish in the top 32 after the first round, followed by the top 16, and so on, she explained.
Naturally, she added, the major goal is to repeat as the Great Lakes High School Fencing Conference champions. The conference meet is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 6, at New Trier High School, Winnetka, Ill.