Mitchell had his first fencing tournament yesterday since joining the high school club. He already missed a couple, including one hosted by his high school last month, due to band commitments. As it turns out, this was the first time for others as well. The tournament took place at John’s Creek High School, which is about 30 minutes from here. I forgot both our camera and our camcorder, and my phone camera hasn’t worked since “the accident”. (Note: I finally ordered a new phone last night). No matter, because the tournament took place in the school’s cafeteria, and there wasn’t really a good view due to space limitations.
I don’t know squat about fencing, but as it turns out, there isn’t much to figure out. The men were split into about 8 or 9 different groups, with 7 in Mitchell’s group. He had to compete against each of the other 6. Basically, if your épée (or sword) touches the other person first, you get a point. The first person with 5 points, or whoever has the most points after time is up (which I am not sure what the time limit is) wins! There’s more to it than this I’m sure, but that’s the gist.
Mitchell’s first opponent was ranked 6th among the high school competitors and is one of his teammates. I talked to him later and he has been participating in fencing for 3 years now, plus he does extra at a local fencing club. Therefore, I didn’t expect much. As it turns out, it ended very quickly and Mitchell wasn’t able to score a point. The second one took a bit longer, but still no points. I knew if he could just get a point or two, he would gain more confidence. I missed the beginning of his third bout, but when I heard the ref say the score was 4-2, I was happy to hear he had points. He didn’t win, but the point barrier had been broken.
Later I went out to my car to relax and tried to time when I should go back inside. I was late getting in and missed a victory! Now I was beginning to think I was bad luck. At the end of the day, he had been eliminated from the finals bracket, but there were plenty of guys that didn’t record a single victory. All in all, I am very proud of his performance. Plus, I have to admit that after watching them for a good part of the day, I wanted to give it a try. If only we had such a club when I was in school. Or did we?