• October Afternoon Foil Fencing Clinic is Canceled

    The afternoon foil fencing clinic, the week of 5-8 Oct to prepare Dark Horse 13-16 yr old junior fencers to compete in the cadet event at the North America Cup, is canceled.

    A four day, afternoon foil fencing clinic may be offered in January for youth and cadet age fencers preparing to compete at the Capital Clash.   If you are planning to compete at the CC and would like to attend an afternoon clinic, Mon-Thur (2:30-6:30 p.m.), the week of the CC, inform your DHFC coach before Sunday, 1 November.

  • Thank You Coach George!

    Photos from Coach George’s June party. Thank you again to everyone who contributed to a fantastic evening.

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  • Dark Horse hosts Sts Peter and Paul Foil Fencing Scrimmage

    100_0542Sts Peter and Paul Foil Fencing Scrimmage fencers

    left-to-right: Paul Anderson (DHFC), Mitchell Brooks (Amelia Steel/Chester Knights), Anna Dunn (DHFC), Nick Dunn (DHFC), and Carter Harrison (DHFC)

    Five youth and junior foil fencers competed in the last scrimmage of the 2014-2015 fencing season hosted by Dark Horse.  One preliminary pool round consisted of five point, two-minute bouts followed by a direct elimination round of seven point matches.

    The direct elimination round began with Nick “Miles” Dunn (1st seed, undefeated), Paul “Brisco” Anderson (2nd seed), Carter “Panther” Harrison (3rd seed), Mitchell “Frosty” Brooks (4th seed) and Anna “Jaguar” Dunn (5th seed).

    In the first match “Frosty” iced “Jaguar” 7-2 to advance into the semifinal round to face the #1 seed, “Miles”.  Miles succeeded in defending his position with a convincing 7-2 victory.

    In the other semifinal match, #2 seed “Brisco” aced “Panther”, 7-0 to advance to the final round junior match versus the #1 seed.  Here again, “Brisco” pulled off a surprise upset, defeating “Miles”, 7-4.

    In the Y-12 direct elimination final match, Panther defeated leftie Jaguar, 7-0.

    100_0545For finishing 2nd place in the Y-12 foil event, “Jaguar” awarded miniature St Paul’s sword letter opener and music CD, Blessings, from Coach Bruce (DHFC)

    100_0546As champion of the Y-12 foil event, “Panther” is awarded replica of the sword “El Cid” and a music CD, First Contact, by Coach Bruce

    100_0549Third place in the junior foil event, “Frosty” Brooks is awarded an electric foil body cord and a framed tribute to Jurassic World Summer Fencing Championship 2015 by Coach Bruce.

    100_0552Nick “Miles” Dunn is awarded a replica of St Peter’s sword and a music CD, Fantastic Four, for his 2nd place finish in the junior foil event by Coach Bruce

    100_0553“Brisco Baldini” is awarded the champion’s prize, a miniature replica of St Paul’s sword, and a music CD, Shadow Recruit, by Coach Bruce

    100_0556For his veteran age epee fencing accomplishment this season, Coach Bruce received a Negrini T-shirt depicting two in-fighting epee fencers

    100_0557Oh yeh!  What every veteran age fencer appreciates — Coach Bruce received maybe a lifetime’s supply of Bio Freeze analgesic

    *All prizes are donated by “Anonymous”.

  • It Could Have Been a Dunn Deal

    Dark Horse Fencing Club held its annual St Joan of Arc foil fencing scrimmage, Thursday evening, 11 June.  The Fantastic Final Four included one left-handed fencer, Anna “Jaguar Antonia” Dunn, and three right-handed fencers, Nick “Miles C-W” Dunn, Carter “Panther Joppich” Harrison, and Paul “Brisco Baldini” Anderson.

    First semi-final match was fought between #3 seed, “Joppich”, and #2 seed “Miles”.  In the third period, Joppich was poised to seal the deal ahead by the score of 14-12.  Instead, Miles methodically staged a comeback using three deep strikes to keep Joppich from effectively riposting.  It became a Dunn’s deal, 14-15.  Referee: Paul “Ryo Myake” Turner.

    In the other semi-final match, #1 seed, “Brisco Baldini” Anderson succeeded in controlling timing, tempo and distance over the #4 seed, leftie, “Jaguar Antonia” Dunn as he cruised to victory, 15-3.  Referee: Paul “Ryo Myake” Turner.

    One Dunn Down, One to Go

    With one Dunn down, Brisco Baldini now refocused his mind on how to bring down the right-handed, deep-striking Dunn.  It was a very long three period match, as the score swung back and forth.  With the score Baldini 14, Miles 12, the American succeeded in pushing the Italian back onto firm ground in zone 3 at which point he prepared to unleash a quick, deep strike at the trapped Italian.  He anticipated that Baldini would either respond with an offensive parry-riposte or a ducking maneuver to displace target while counter attacking. Instead, saving the best for last, Baldini executed a perfectly timed inquartata that nailed Miles by surprise in his deep strike lunge, which went wide left of Baldini’s target.  Final score, Brisco Baldini 15, Miles C-W 12.  On to Richmond, Sunday!

    Joan of Arc Scrimmage

  • The Dark Horse Victorious over Epee Field — “Battle of Spotsylvania” Fencing Tournament

    In the Bible, 2 Timothy, 2:4 you read “… an athlete cannot receive the winner’s crown except by competing according to the rules.” Fencing has a set of rules of conduct, but more than just those rules are the principles of fencing every successful coach knows and their fencers must apply.  Dark Horse Fencing Club head coach Miles (Bruce) Callander, a veteran-age epee fencer, too, reinforced the principles of champion epee fencing on Saturday, 23 May 15, during the Battle of Spotsylvania fencing tournament for veteran-age (over-40 yrs old) competitors tuning up for the United States National Fencing Championships in San Jose, CA, in July.

    Semiannually, Dark Horse Fencing Club plays host to the Virginia Division tournaments for veteran-age fencers, which comprise events for all three weapons: foil, sabre and epee.  Included with the tournament is a delicious buffet by Master Chef Lincoln freshly prepared on-site and precisely presented at the time of day of each event.  In that way, fencers who compete in all three events may enjoy different buffet items.  The epee event was the last of three scheduled that day.

    Initially seeded 10th of 15 epee combatants before Round#1-pools, behind a B, four Cs, three Ds, and an E-rated fencer, Coach Bruce (an E-rated epee fencer), was also the sole Dark Horse fencer competing in the tournament, overall.

    The 15 epeeists divided into three pools of five each for Round 1.  At the conclusion of the round, Coach Bruce, won 3 bouts and lost 1 bout in Pool #3.  He finished #2 in his pool; and, overall he placed 5th before Round #2 – Direct Elimination.  At this moment, the Dark Horse epeeist lagged only behind two of the four Cs, and two of the three Ds.

    Fencing in the Sweet Sixteen, the Dark Horse barely edged past the now flaming hot #12 seed, Castilla McNamara, Rockville Fencing Academy, by the score of 10-8, to defend his position in the herd and advance to the Elite Eight.

    Next up, Ivan Wilson, Old Town Fencing Club, one of the two remaining C-rated fencers, seeded #4.  The Dark Horse needed to surge now, or else call it a fun day and return to bout committee duty.  From the get-go (En Guard, Ready, Fence!), the Dark Horse established and maintained unmatchable timing, tempo, distance cruising to a 10-5 victory into the Fantastic Final Four.

    Surprisingly, his next opponent was not the other C-rated fencer, #1 seed, James Newsome, Tidewater Fencing Club.  Instead, he faced off against the #9 seed, C-rated David Nemazie, Salisbury Fencing Club, who had eliminated Mr. Newsome from the tournament with a 10-8 victory.  Nonetheless, the true Dark Horse was undaunted by the surprise as he cruised past for a 6-10 victory into the Gold Medal match.

    “Timing, Tempo, Distance”.  From 10th place to 5th place, and now the final match against the #2 seed, Ray Gordon (D-rated), Chesapeake Fencing Club.  Mr Gordon did not fade as easily as the Dark Horse’s previous opponents.  But in the end, Coach Bruce, the Dark Horse, prevailed 10-9 to champion the epee event.

    Congratulations, Coach Bruce, the Dark Horse!

    Coach BruceBlack_Knight_on Black HorseThe Dark Horse



  • “Brisco” and “Panther” win — For Greater Glory — Foil Scrimmage

    100_0537The Fantastic Final Four (l-r): Paul “Brisco” Anderson, Nick “Miles” Dunn, Anna “Jaguar” Dunn, and kneeling is Carter “Panther” Harrison

    Over two hours of fencing combat the evening of 21 May, For Greater Glory, came down to the final matches in the Junior foil event between #1 seed “Brisco” and #2 seed “Miles”, and in the Y-12 foil event between #3 seed “Jaguar” and #4 seed “Panther”.

    2015 For Greater Glory Junior foil event champion: Paul “Brisco” Anderson, 10-8.

    2015 For Greater Glory Y-12 foil event champion: Carter “Panther” Harrison, 10-4.

    Referees: Strip 1: Emma “Doc” Bone”; Strip 2: Paul “Ryo Miyake” Turner

    Master Armorer: Bruce “Batman” Callander

    Score Keeper: Fencer X

  • For Greater Glory, Y-12 & Junior Foil Scrimmage, Thursday, 21 May

    For Greater Glory, 21 May 2015

    Thursday, 21 May, 6-9pm, Dark Horse Fencing Club is hosting a youth and junior foil fencing scrimmage, entitled For Greater Glory, in remembrance of the children martyrs of The Cristero War 1926-1929, and to honor movie composer, James Horner, who composed the outstanding soundtrack to the epic historical 2012 movie, For Greater Glory.  This is the final scrimmage in our Season of Music series of scrimmages, during which we have honored the music of well-know movie music composers.

    There are two events.  One event will be for boys and girls ages 9-12 years old (Y-12), and the other will be for ages 13-18 years old (Junior).  Door will open at 6pm.  Photo opportunity/scrimmage class picture at 6:30pm.  National anthem at 6:40.  Scrimmage begins at 6:45pm and should conclude by 8:45pm, followed by presentation of awards.

    All competitors must be members of the US Fencing Association, and everyone must abide by the rules of US Fencing, especially in matters of safety, equipment, and sportsmanship.

    Scrimmage is free to Dark Horse members and to their invitees.

    Others may also compete pending available slots, but they will pay a floor fee of $15. Equipment rental is extra.  Please contact Dark Horse by 7pm, Wednesday, 20 May, if you desire to compete.

    Lastly, please save the date, Friday, 19 June, 5-7pm.  Dark Horse will hold its final Y-12 & Junior fencing scrimmage of the 2014-2015 fencing season before US Summer Nationals.

    Sts Peter and Paul Fencing Tournament


  • Emma Bone wins The Avengers: Age of Ultron Foil Fencing Tournament

    Dark Horse Fencing Club, Mechanicsville Fencing Academy, Chester Knights/Amelia Steel Youth, Cadet and Junior age fencers competed in a special spring tournament to commemorate the opening of the movie The Avengers: Age of Ultron in theaters, 1 May.  Fencers competed for one of six LEGO prizes from the Marvel Super Heroes Avengers Collection: Iron Man vs. Ultron; Avengers Hydra Showdown; The Hulk Buster Smash; The Quinjet City Chase; Attack on Avengers Tower; and The Hydra Fortress Smash.  Top three fencers in each event won a prize.

    Avengers_Age of Ultron Foil Scrimmage, 24 Apr 15In the semi-final match, club mates, Paul “Brisco Baldini” Anderson (#1 seed) defeated Nick “Miles C-W” Dunn (#5 seed), 3-0, in an intense, one-minute direct elimination match.

    In the other semi-final match, #2 Emma “Doc” Bone (MFA/DHFC) also dispatched her opponent, the #6 seed southpaw, Cole “Cassara” Ramos, 3-0.  Special guest, Paul “Ryo Miyake” Turner,  refereed the match.

    “Cassara” and “Miles” then fenced for third place under the watchful eye of ref “Ryo”.  First three scores were awarded the southpaw, “Cassara”, as “Miles” struggled to overcome his persistent problem against lefties.  But, it was just too much too soon under the pressure of the one-minute direct elimination match challenge for “Miles” to stage a comeback. By the score of 4-3, “Cassara” won third place pick of the prizes.

    In the championship match, “Doc” surprised “Brisco” with an upset victory, 4-1.  Coach Mark Logan (Amelia Steel/Chester Knights) refereed the match.

    Cadet and Junior Foil Event

    1. Emma “Doc” Bone (MFA/DHFC)
    2. Paul “Brisco Baldini” Anderson (DHFC)
    3. Cole “Cassara” Ramos (DHFC)
    4. Nick “Miles Chamley-Watson” Dunn (DHFC)
    5. Zach (AS/CK)
    6. Tim “Stretch” Armstrong (AS/CK)
    7. Conner “Stryker” McKevitt (DHFC)
    8. Mitchell (AS/CK)

    Y-12 Foil Event

    1. Carter “Panther-Joppich” Harrison (DHFC)
    2. Jato (AS/CK)
    3. Anna “Jaguar” Dunn (DHFC)
  • One Eagle soars high above the Herd

    University of Mary Washington “Eagles” epee fencer, Ben Wilson, won the 2015 St. George the Dragonslayer epee tournament hosted by Dark Horse Fencing Club, on the feast day of St George.

    Standing left-to-right: Ben Wilson, (UMWFC), Cory "Boomer" Mitchell (DHFC), Logan "Wolverine" Everts (DHFC), Ian Nace (UMWFC). Kneeling: Bruce "Batman" Callander (DHFC), Meaghan Searless (UMWFC), Emma "Doc" Bone (MFA/DHFC), Sam "Storm'n" Morgan (DHFC)

    Standing left-to-right: Ben Wilson, (UMWFC), Cory “Boomer” Mitchell (DHFC), Logan “Wolverine” Everts (DHFC), Ian Nace (UMWFC). Kneeling: Bruce “Batman” Callander (DHFC), Meaghan Searless (UMWFC), Emma “Doc” Bone (MFA/DHFC), Sam “Storm’n” Morgan (DHFC)

    Wilson, the #1 seed, advanced to the championship match by narrowly defeating “Batman” Callander, 15-14.  His opponent, Sam “Storm’n” Morgan, the #6 seed, also narrowly won his semi-final match against, #2 seed, “Doc” Bone, 8-6.

    “Doc” and “Batman” then fenced for third place.  Relying heavily upon her foil fencing skills instead of her epee skills, Doc defeated the Batman, 15-12.

    “Storm’n” tried to slow match tempo down as he had done successfully against “Doc”, but Mr. Wilson controlled it instead.  It was Mr. Wilson’s war from start to finish on the way to a smooth 15-9 victory.  With the UMWFC victory in epee, plus their victory last December in the Battle of Fredericksburg foil tournament, the Eagles won the 2014-2015 series 2-1 and got to keep the traveling trophy, until next December.  DHFC lone victory this season was The Fighting Irish Brigade Sabre Tournament in March.

    1. Ben Wilson (UMWFC Eagles)
    2. “Storm’n” Morgan (Dark Horse FC)
    3. “Doc” Bone (MFA/DHFC)
    4. “Batman” Callander (DHFC)
    5. “Boomer” Mitchell (DHFC)
    6. Ian Nace (UMWFC)
    7. “Wolverine” Everts (DHFC)
    8. Meaghan Searless (UMWFC)


  • “Doc” Medals at Womens Unclassified Foil Fencing Tournament, 4 April 2015


    “Doc” Emma Bone (left) wins silver medal, while Emma Hartlaub (right) of Out-of-Nowhere Frederick MD fencing club wins gold medal and “E-2015” rating.

     Emma “Doc” Bone (Mechanicsville Fencing Club/Dark Horse Fencing Club) competed in the Chesapeake Fencing Club hosted Women’s foil fencing event for unclassified rated fencers.  The stakes were high! Ten women between Cadet and Veteran ages vied for one E-rating that would be awarded to the champion.

    Effectively executing a strategic concept to win each bout by the widest margin, “Doc” won her first preliminary bout, 5-1; her second bout, 5-2; her third bout 5-1; and her fourth bout 5-1.  Consequently, she earned the #1 seed going into direct elimination and a bye until the Elite Eight round.

    Her first match was with the #8 seed, Jennifer Facchine from the West Shore Fencing Club, Harrisburg, PA.  Here “Doc” successfully executed a second strategic concept — defeat opponent in the first round so they can not have a respite to consult with their coach and rehydrate — in rapidly defeating Ms. Facchine in the first period, 15-3.

    In the Final Four, “Doc” fenced her first lefty of the tournament, #5 seed, Nadia Dryer from Fencing Sports Academy.  This was a tough bout, despite the special virtual preparatory training she received by her coach during the two hour commute to the venue, which focused heavily on defeating lefties.  It took three periods, but “Doc” finally edged Ms. Dryer, 15-11, to advance to the championship, gold medal match with #3 seed, Emma Hartlaub from Out-of-Nowhere Fencing Club, Frederick, MD.

    Each fencer exchanged scores but by the end of two periods of close, intense combat, “Doc” held lead, 12-10.  Upon the resumption of fencing, however, “Doc” was unable to refocus and concentrate to close-out Ms. Hartlaub.  Instead, Ms. Hartlaub exploited one opportunity after another to mount a successful comeback to win the match, gold medal and “E-rating” by the score 12-15.  “E(rating)=Emma²”