Fencing is a technical sport that requires an understanding and appreciation for precision and focus – and that’s just why Wade Perkins ’12 likes it. Perkins, who is vice captain of the Colleges fencing club, says to fence successfully, “one must possess speed and accuracy, but also tactical insight into one’s opponent’s defenses and strategies. As someone who grew up playing chess, I find fencing’s moniker of ‘physical chess’ to be quite accurate.”
Despite the highly technical nature of the sport, the culture of the club is friendly and only as competitive as you make it, he says. Whether you have little or no experience, there are friendly students who are willing to teach you.
One of more than 20 club sports that the Colleges sustain during the academic year, the fencing club is currently captained by Richard Burroughs ’12 and is comprised of 10 members who practice daily during the academic year. They compete in local tournaments every few weeks.
Established only five years ago, the members have found some recent success in both recruiting and in local tournaments. Within the last year, the club has bought team jackets and they have successfully invested in the necessary equipment to compete against other schools. As captain, Burroughs is an experienced fencer who helps other members improve their skills. He receives help in this area from Bill Peeler, the Finger Lakes Community College Fencing Coach, and the club is currently looking for a full-time coach who can help elevate all members’ skill levels.
Ultimately, Burroughs notes club members would like to hold competitions and tournaments on campus. In order to do so, the group needs to purchase electronic equipment used in officiating and scoring fencing matches. Club members are currently looking for ways to raise both awareness and funding to acquire the necessary equipment.
The fencing club meets Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 7 to 9 p.m., and Saturdays from 1 to 3 p.m., on the second floor of the Barn. Anyone interested in joining should contact Burroughs.