Huntington High School fencing coaches took the road to present this year’s awards to the team’s top graduating seniors. Ordinarily, the trophies would have been given out at the Blue Devil Senior Athletic Awards Banquet, but the COVID-19 pandemic prevented that event from being held in the school gym. Instead, there were a series of personalized individual ceremonies at each athlete’s home.
Huntington head coach Michelle O’Brien and assistant coach Burke Tomaselli paid visits to the homes of each of the top seniors. Wearing masks and following appropriate distancing guidelines, the coaching duo paid tribute to an outstanding group of young people. Assistant coach Vin O’Garra wasn’t able to make it in person, but he was there in spirit.
Josefina Fasolino (Alfred University) garnered the senior MVP Award for the Blue Devil girls’ fencing squad. Nicholas Kretschmer (SUNY College at Geneseo) was named the boys’ team’s senior MVP. Coaches Awards went to Riley Tucker (SUNY College at Geneseo), Gabriel Medina-Jaudes (Carnegie Mellon University), Paul Katigbak (Boston College), Diego Torres (CUNY-John Jay College of Criminal Justice), Brandon Varady (New York Institute of Technology) and Neil Jean-Baptiste (Univ. of Delaware).
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The Huntington High School girls’ fencing team won the Section XI League I Sportsmanship Award as determined by ratings submitted by the league’s coaches.
The Blue Devils appear well positioned to be much more competitive next winter and beyond. Almost the entire squad will be returning, including four of five fencers who garnered post-season honors.
The Blue Devils finished seventh in the Section XI championships this year, but the team expects to climb several slots higher in 2020/21. With so many experienced fencers coming back, it looks like Huntington is prepared to flex its muscles.
The top returners look to be junior sabre Adora Colay (honorable Mention All-County; second team All-League), sophomore sabre Ally Kustera (honorable mention All-County; honorable mention All-League), sophomore foil Maddy Bavaro (honorable mention All-League) and junior epee Aileen Lopez (honorable mention All-County).
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The Huntington boys’ fencing team closed out its season at the county championships with several Blue Devils battling their way to awards. The squad went from two wins last year to six this winter. Next year’s team will be a mix of youth and veteran fencers.
Senior Nicholas Kretschmer fenced his way to first team All-League and second team All-County honors in sabre. Senior Neil Jean-Baptiste garnered second team All-League recognition, also in sabre.
Sophomore Luca D’Anna and junior Miles Tierney both notched second team All-League and honorable mention All-County honors in foil.
Senior Riley Tucker was second team All-League and second team All-County in epee.