Leeds foil challenge from Northumbria

Women’s Fencing 

Leeds Uni 126- 106 Northumbria 

ENGARDE: Leeds duelling for honour
ENGARDE: Leeds duelling for honour

The bitter chill of snow did nothing to the spirits of the women’s fencing this Wednesday. In an exciting match they faced Northumbria, who they are currently drawing with on points in the BUCS table.

Leeds started with the épée, favourite sword of GB pentathlete Molly Goodlass. Molly’s experience with the sword showed and Leeds began to take an early lead keeping a consistent 13 points ahead.

However the tide soon began to turn as Northumbria caught up and closed the gap. The final match with Goodlass at the helm was bravely fought by Northumbria. They made huge gains against Leeds but Goodlass managed to get to 45 points with three seconds to spare. The home side took the épée 45-36, giving them a comfortable start.

Next came the sabre, not a favourite blade for the Leeds side and it showed early on. The lead changed hands constantly with no one on either team being able to get significantly ahead. However, late on Northumbria began to come back and claim the lead themselves. The away team girl favoured a more aggressive swiping technique that paid dividends for them and gave them a commanding 13 point lead mid way through the match. Freya Young then took to the stage and showed off her abilities with the sabre. She fought hard, conceding few points but managing to narrow the gap to a mere 6 points, a truly exceptional feat for one fencer.

But this single performance was not enough to redeem Leeds in the end and they lost the sabre 45-38. In the total running it was 83-81 to Leeds giving them a crucial two point headstart into the final round, but it was still all to play for. Northumbria came in with a strong start, clearly they wanted the win, and their aggressive tactics paid off in the first two round. Leeds looked to be tiring but then Laura Boehm took up her foil and brought in an exceptional comeback claiming 12 points off her opponent and only conceding two.

Leeds then seemed galvanized by this effort and didn’t loose a single point for the next two rounds.

This powerful performance did not stop there and Leeds continued their winning streak well into the final round with Freya Young finishing it off to give the girls a 45-25 win.

This exciting and ultimately satisfying match puts Leeds ahead of Northumbria in the BUCS table and third overall. Individual efforts may have been great in this match but it was the team as a whole that lead to this decisive win.

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