Fencing continues to slice through the stereotypes


Photo courtesy of Teddy Press.

By Josie Berger, Sports editior

Although overlooked by many at West Essex, the fencing team is making their mark as an extremely successful and highly competitive winter sport this season. Their hard work and determination continues to contribute to their ongoing achievements each season.

To those who don’t know the sport well, fencing might seem very simple and easy. However, fencing is an intricate sport that requires high level focus, precision and skill.

“The team is very competitive in general,” Coach Amanda Fernicola said. “They put 110 percent effort into everything.”

The team has practice after school where they participate in a variety of workouts. All of the 45 athletes will come together to work on clinical style workouts, and the seniors will lead dynamic workouts. Since there are three different weapons, the fencers are split into separate groups to practice skills specific to their weapon.

The team competes against other schools in fencing matches. Every match is competitive since the schools they compete against are the best in the area. Two athletes will battle with the same weapon, and compete for the win. A goal the team this season is to get as many athletes into states as possible. The fencers feel being on the team is a unique experience that can’t be achieved in another sport.

“I love being a part of the fencing team since it’s a really cool and different sport,” freshman Antonia Salluce said.

Each athlete has their own personal goals for the season such as to move up to states or meet a personal best. The fencers always try their best during practice and some even fence for club teams during the off season for extra work and experience.

“I have learned a lot from being on the fencing team and from being surrounded by so many intelligent people,” junior Josephine Salluce said. “It is an academic team, since the sport is considered mind chess. I also love being able to fence with my sister this year.” West Essex fencing has continued to grow over the years and hopes to keep expanding in the future. The program is extremely strong due to all of the dedicated, hard working athletes, and they  hope their work will contribute to their success.