By Raine B.
Galileo’s Fencing team had a small but motivated and tight knit group that had aspirations of a high finish at the All-City competition this year. However, the low number of fencers on the team and overall inexperience led to a disappointing record and lower than expected finish at All-City in which the boys team came in 7th, while the girls came in 6th.
The fencing team tried many times to recruit more fencers, but couldn’t get students to come out consistently. Officially the team had 15 members, but only 11-12 came out regularly to all of the practices and matches. Some members on the team felt it was due to the old equipment the team used, while others thought that people just didn’t want to commit to coming everyday. Freshman Amanda Altobano said, “I highly recommends fencing, but it takes a lot of time, commitment and some exercise.”
In addition to a lack of commitment, some fencers believed the team’s poor win/loss record was due to their own overconfidence. Sophomore Ike B., who fenced for Galileo for the first time this year, but has been fencing for over a year and a half, said, “I think we underestimated our competition a little. I don’t think we realized the superior talent that the other schools had.”
Although the team did not meet expectations this season, there were some bright spots, namely that senior captain Nicholas W. qualified for the All-State competition. The team unanimously agreed that Nicholas was the strength of their team this season. Ike said, “He has lot of experience. A lot of fencing is experience, the movements feel more natural and you anticipate what’s coming the more experience you have. That’s what made him so strong.”
The other bright spot is the future for the fencing team. Although Nicholas will be graduating, most of the members of the team will be back next year. Most agree Ike will be the strongest male fencer coming back, while Sophomore Amanda Altobano is the strongest female fencer. Additionally Junior Ken Z. and Freshman Brianne Y. will also help make up a strong nucleus.
Although the team is looking forward to next year, they still speak fondly of this season. Got to meet lot of new people. Ike says, “ This season was fun. Some people did really good job even though they didn’t think they did, and we lost a lot of close matches.”