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NEW YORK -- Columbia fencing is set to kick off 2012-13 intercollegiate action with its annual home multi-team meet in the University (Blue) Gym on Friday, Nov. 30. The Lions will host NJIT, Stevens Tech and Tufts beginning at 4 p.m.

Already off to a successful season, Columbia opened 2012-13 with a strong showing at the first North American Cup of the year, held October 12-15 in St. Louis. A total of thirteen current Columbia team members and five alumni placed in the top 32.

Headlining the top finishers was Columbia assistant coach Daria Schneider, who won gold in the Division I women's sabre, sophomore Michael Josephs, who won bronze in Division I men's sabre and freshman Jackie Dubrovich, who earned bronze in Division I women's foil.

The success continues as Columbia fencers showed the world what to expect this coming season as Geoffrey Loss represented the Lions with a gold medal at the Men's Sabre Junior World Cup in Kiev, Ukraine, while Jackie Dubrovich earned bronze at the Women's Foil Junior World Cup in Luxembourg.

The gold medal was the first international title for Loss, who became the first Team USA member in the last three years to earn a place on the top of the podium at a Men's Junior Sabre World Cup. For Dubrovich, the bronze was the first Junior World Cup medal for the two-time Junior World Team silver medalist.

An early preview of what's to come for Columbia fencing, first-years Loss and Margaret Lu, paced five other teammates in the North American Cup at the Virginia Beach Convention Center in mid-November.

Lu earned a gold medal in Junior Women's Foil, finishing first in a field of 125 fencers from all points of the nation. Loss earned a bronze in Junior Men's Sabre, beating all but two of 136 competitors. Two other Lion first-years, Harry Bergman and Adam Mathieu, were finalists in Junior Men's Foil, finishing seventh and eighth in a field of 161 fencers.

Lu proved herself once again as she won her second straight Junior Foil World Cup title in Bratislava, Slovakia barely one week later.

Top returners for the Lions this year include the 2012 second-place NCAA finisher in junior epeeist Alen Hadzic, as well as 2012 London Olympians Nzingha Prescod and Nicole Ross.

The men also boast two returning first team All-Ivy selections from 2012, sophomore sabrist Will Spear, who was the 2012 Outstand Performer of the Year, and junior foilist Alex Pensler, while sophomore sabrist Mel Rodriguez was a second team pick.

The women return first-team All-Ivy honorees in junior sabrist Loweye Diedro and sophomore epeeist Diana Tsinis, as well as a second team selection in junior sabrist Eassane Diedro.

Round #1

4:00 p.m. - Columbia vs. Stevens/Tufts

Round #2

5:15 p.m - Columbia vs. NJIT


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