Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Tourney Reflection v. 10

I don't mind going to Charlottesville for a tournament. It's a pleasant, not overly long drive, and though the venue is in dire need of some AC, at least you don't have to sit on someone's lap while you're waiting to fence like at the Richmond space. So Saturday morning I got up, got my iPod and a cup of hot tea to keep me company on the way and set out to fight some foil.

I should have stayed in bed.

I don't know what was wrong - I didn't feel like I was fencing poorly, but my point was just not finding the lame. I just kept telling myself (and everyone else) that it was because I've only been practicing epee for the last couple months, in preparation for Nationals. Fortunately, I did fare better in epee which almost gives that foil excuse some weight. Almost.

Sunday was C and Under epee. They actually drew up the pools, we were getting ready to fence and then...oh wait, we need to do it all over again. So they redrew the pools and I ended up with only four bouts to fence. I'm not sure if this is good or bad, since it's almost a given I will lose the first bout (which I did). But I won two after that and then lost to a kid who was six feet tall and built mainly from toothpicks. I was feeling pretty good about this showing. My spouse, who came to watch, said my fighting looked great and I believe him as he is not shy about telling me when I do NOT look great. So after waiting around for more than an hour (waiting seems to be a favorite pastime in the Virginia division) I finally got my first round DE fight. It turned out I was the higher seed - though I'm not convinced my pool was as competitive as everyone else's. But I have seen my opponent fight before and though he is mainly a foilist, he is certainly an experienced and capable fencer. It was 15 - 12 in the end, for him and I got to go home for the day (actually a relief after waiting over four hours to fight five bouts).

Overall, I am optimistic about epee, and though my to-do list titled "How to Get Better at Epee" gets longer everyday, it is clear. Though not everything on it is easily achievable.

1) Find the right balance of passivity and aggression for the opponent. I think I would've gotten a few more touches if I had been more patient.
2) Evaluate what is working and what isn't more quickly. If I could've done this in the DE, I think I could've won. He was incredibly vulnerable under his wrist and I was able to hit it about every time that I went for it.

Oh and about a thousand other things that I am too tired to think of tonight.

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