Aug. 12, 2010
SAN JOSE, Costa Rica -
Former Irish fencer Mariel Zagunis and current junior Gerek Meinhardt headlined a list of four Notre Dame fencers that competed at the 2010 Pan American Championships. Zagunis and Meinhardt brought home a total of three gold medals at the competition for the American squad.
Zagunis, a sabreist, was able to bring home a pair of gold medals for the Americans, capturing both the individual crown and helping her sabre team emerge victorious. For Zagunis, the individual gold medal marks her second straight Pan American title and follows up her gold at the World Cup in New York City on June 19. The U.S. secured the team title with a hard-fought 45-37 win over Canada in the finals.
Meinhardt helped the U.S. men's foil squad to the team title while also staking claim to fifth place in the individual competition. The men's foil team entered the elimination stage as the overall No. 1 seed and they held true to form as the squad won every match by at least 24 touches, including a convincing finals win over Venezuela, 45-17. In individual action, Meinhardt finished fifth after losing a decision to his American teammate and eventual silver medalist, Miles Chamley-Watson.
Sisters Courtney Hurley and Kelley Hurley also got into the action for Team USA; grabbing three medals of their own in women's epee. The duo earned a spot on the podium of the individual competition as Kelly and Courtney brought home the silver and bronze medals, respectively. The two also would help the epee team finish third after winning a close decision over Venezuela, 45-37, in the bronze medal match.
All told, the U.S. team finished atop the medal count standings with six gold medals, two silver medals and seven bronze medals. Canada finished second with 10 total medals, including six silver. Cuba rounded out the top three teams with seven medals, including four first-place finishes.
The Pan American Championships serve as an individual and team qualifying tournament for the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico. Up-to-date results can be found at http://fie.ch/ (http://fie.ch/).