Fencing officially added to Show-Me State Games lineup

Thursday, July 14, 2011 | 7:50 p.m. CDT; updated 9:35 p.m. CDT, Thursday, July 14, 2011
MU Fencing Club members Rebecca Johnson, left, and Matt Willis, right, face off at a team practice. The group recently returned from the Fencing National Championships in Nevada.

COLUMBIA — The 2011 Show-Me State Games officially added sport fencing to this year’s lineup, continuing the tradition of adding an event every year.  

Emily Lorenz, a representative for the Show-Me State Games, said this year it's really a case of bringing back a sport.

“We used to have it a number of years ago," Lorenz said, "but it went away for a while because we did not have a commissioner to run the event.”

Sport fencing was an unofficial part of the games in the spring of 2010. The MU Fencing Club had asked for sport fencing to be added, but the venues for competitions fill up quickly, and fencing had to be fit in at the last minute. The only available place for the tournament was the hallways of Hearnes Center.

Former MU Fencing Club president Matt Willis laughed and said, “Yeah, it was interesting, but this year we’ll have a better setup.”

This year, the fencing tournament is set to be held July 30 and 31 at the Southern Boone Elementary School, in Ashland.

Although the event was added late last year and wasn’t in the Show-Me State Games entry book, there was a good turnout. Lorenz said there were about 35 entries, so they decided to officially add the sport this year.

The MU Fencing Club recently returned from the Fencing National Championships in Nevada, and immediately began practicing for the Show-Me State Games. Club president Raquel Schilf said she is confident in her teammates.

“I think we’ll do well," Schilf said. "Not to be cocky, but normally one or two of us are in the top three.”

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Ellis Smith July 15, 2011 | 2:56 p.m.

I believe the rules specify that only Missouri residents are eligible to compete.

If that rule could be waived for fencing, there would be many contestants, for epee alone. No lack of fencing talent within a 300 mile radius of Columbia, but its partly beyond state boundaries.

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