• 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”

  • Paul Anderson Qualifies for US Fencing Summer Nationals in Y-14 Foil Event

    On Sunday, 22 March 2015, Paul “Brisco” Anderson won the silver medal at the Virginia Division’s Qualification Tournament for US Summer Nationals in the Y-14 men foil event.  The top three fencers in the event all qualified.

    Carter “Panther” Harrison and Connor “Stryker” McKevitt received 5th and 7th place medals, respectively, by virtue of finishing in the elite eight.

    In the semifinals, “Brisco”, seeded #1, fenced lefty, Nate Hayes of Salle Green fencing club.  “Brisco” won the match in the first period with four second remaining on the clock, 15-6.

    In the final match, “Brisco” fenced the #2 seed, lefty, David Gardner, Virginia Academy of Fencing.  “Brisco” lost the match, 6-15.


  • Nick Dunn Wins Silver Medal and Qualifies for Division 2 and 3 Men Foil Events at US Fencing Summer Nationals!

    On the feast day of St. Nicholas of Flue, 21 March, Dark Horse junior fencer Nicholas Dunn had reason to celebrate, too.  Seeded #4, Nick defeated the #1 seed in the men foil event, 15-13, in the second period of their match.  Earlier in the morning, Nick had lost to the #1 seed, 0-5 in a preliminary bout so it was especially sweet to see how he overcame the psychological pressure in direct elimination match play.  Nick successfully applied second intention fencing skills he’s been practicing for a couple of weeks.

    With that victory, Nick faced the #2 seed, a skillful lefty, for the gold medal.  Unfortunately, lefties have been a chronic problem for Nick and today was no different.  The #2 seed defeated Nick, 15-8.  Despite the lose, Nick won the silver medal and qualified to compete at the US Fencing Summer Nationals in both the Division 2 and 3 men foil events.

    Emma “Doc” Bone won the 4th place medal in the women’s foil event, and Gavin “Giorgio” Cornell won the 5th place medal in the men foil event.

    This weekend’s Division 2/3 and Y-14 Qualifiers for US Summer Nationals was hosted by the Charlottesville Fencing Alliance at their nice training and competition facility in Charlottesville, VA.

    Div 2 and 3 Foil

  • “Brisco Baldini” — Most Valorous — Sworn to Valor, Cadet Foil Scrimmage Champion!

    All the Dark Horse cadet age fencers used Friday’s late afternoon scrimmage to help bounce them to qualify for the Division 2/3 foil event and or the Y-14 foil event at US Fencing’s Summer Nationals, San Jose, CA in July. The qualification events for Division 2/3 foil occurred on 21 March, and the Y-14 events occurred on Sunday, 22 March.

    First quarterfinal match was between 4th seed, Emma “Doc” Bone and 5th seed, Gavin “Giorgio Avola” Cornell.  “Doc” built a strong early lead, 12-4, by the second period before “Giorgio” mounted a serious comeback, three points at-a-time.  With eight second remaining in the second of three, three minute fencing periods, “Doc” still held what appeared to be a insurmountable lead, 14-10.  Instead of closing out the match with a fast attack to keep thirsty “Giorgio A” from a water break, “Doc” chose not to risk an attack now and thus allowed “Giorgio” to escape to refresh for the third period.  It was a fatal mistake.  Refreshed now, “Giorgio” brought the venue to a calm silence as all fencers stopped their competitions to come watch a spectacular comeback.  Five straight points — Gavin “Giorgio Avola” Cornell — staged the finest comeback in Dark Horse history, 15-14, before the eyes of everyone that afternoon!

    The first semifinal match occurred between Carter “Panther Joppich” Harrison and Nicholas “Miles C-W” Dunn.  Both fencers exchanged points through the first four, then “Miles” went on a six point tear, 10-4.  “Panther” clawed back, 13-14.  Then with an amazing surge he tore the flesh off “Miles” with two straight points to win just as spectacularly as Gavin did in his match, 15-14.  What a valorous scrimmage!

    Next up, the semifinal match between #1 seed, Paul “Brisco Baldini” Anderson and #5 seed Gavin “Giorgio Avola” Cornell.  Through the first minute of the first period the fencers exchanged points, 3-3.  Then Brisco surged for four more to end the first period with a 7-3 lead. For the first minute of the second period the fencers again exchanged a pair of scores, 9-5, before Brisco busted the second period wide open with a run of five consecutive scores to make the score, 14-5.  Giorgio mustered a pair of scores in reply, but Brisco was playing a solid second intention game, which enabled him to score the final point, 15-7.

    Final match #1 seeded Baldini versus #3 seeded Joppich.  Both fencers chose to play second intention; however the quick, light touch Baldini controlled distance, established an early lead and succeeded to build upon it, never losing the lead to Joppich.  FInal score, Paul “Brisco Baldini” Anderson, 15, Carter “Panther Joppich” Harrison, 8.    As scrimmage champion, Brisco won the “Sworn to Valor” t-shirt.




  • Fighting Irish Brigade Sabre Scrimmage — “Batman” saves Gotham City, again!

    University of Mary Washington and Dark Horse fencing clubs met in their annual sabre scrimmage, 19 March, in Fredericksburg, VA, at the Dark Horse Fencing Club facility.  Final four combatants were Brandt “Rocket” Hicks (Dark Horse), seeded 4th, Ben Wilson (UMWFC), seeded 3rd; Sam “Storm’n” Morgan (Dark Horse), seeded 2nd; and Bruce “Batman” Callander (Dark Horse), seeded 1st.  “Batman” defeated “Rocket” in the first semi-final match, 15-5.  “Storm’n” damaged Ben, 15-9.  In the fence-off for 3rd place, Ben shot down “Rocket”, 15-7, to clinch 3rd place bronze medal.  In the final match, “Batman” countered “Storm’n’s” late strong four unanswered points comeback, which drew “Storm’n” to within two points of “Batman”, with a flurry of three consecutive points of his own to win the match, 15-10.  Congratulations “Batman” — Gotham City’ s Super Hero!Fighting Irish Brigade Sabre Tourney, Final Four

  • March 20 – The Sword of Valor

    March 20, 2015: The Sword of Valor

    Summary: to come

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  • Battle Along the Rappahannock — Photos

    February 20, 2015, Battle along the Rappahannock

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  • Clement Weather Favors Battle Along the Rappahannock Fencing Scrimmage

    Youth and juniors from Chester Knights, Amelia Steel, Mechanicsville and Dark Horse fencing clubs held a foil and epee scrimmage Friday evening, 20 February, entitled Battle along the Rappahannock, to commemorate the birthday month of America’s great music composer and conductor, John Williams.

    In the Junior Epee Event, Logan “Wolverine” Everts (Dark Horse) won the gold medal by the score of 9-3 over Emma “Doc” Bone (Mechanicsville) who won the silver medal, and Cory “Mattern” Mitchell (Dark Horse) won the bronze medal.

    In the Y-12 Mixed Foil Event, Anna “Thornblade” Dunn (Dark Horse) won the bronze medal, Evin Gwaltney (Amelia Steel) won the silver medal, and Carter “Panther Joppich” Harrison (Dark Horse) won the gold medal by the score of 15-12.

    Two Cadet mixed, composite foil teams formed to compete in a team relay match.  Team District 13 captained by Paul “Brisco Baldini” Anderson (Dark Horse) included Ms. Taylor Davis and Nick “Miles CW” Dunn (Dark Horse).  Team Three Musketeers captained by Tim Armstrong included Gavin “Giorgio Avola” Cornell (Dark Horse) and Mitchell Brooks.  “Brisco” and “Giorgio” started the action fighting to a 5-4 decision in favor of team District 13.  Tim Armstrong brought Three Musketeers back, however, with a decisive 6-0 victory over Taylor Davis.  With bouts tied 1-1, and team score 10-5 in favor of Three Musketeers, Nick and Mitchell faced off in bout three.  Inspired by his US foil champion hero, Miles Chamley-Watson, Nick answered District 13‘s need by propelling District ahead, 15-11, outscoring Mitchell, 10-1.  The match continued to seesaw with the 4th bout, as Gavin, inspired by Italian foil champion hero, Giorgio Avola, brought Three Musketeers right back with a 9-4 victory over Taylor Davis.

    The 5th bout proved to be the breakout opportunity for team District 13.  “Brisco” won the bout over Mitchell, 6-1, enabling District 13 to pull ahead for good, 25-21.

    In the 6th bout, “Miles” padded District‘s lead, 30-24, with a victory over Tim.  Taylor made an awesome contribution for team District 13 as she successfully fenced Mitchell to a 5-5 tie in the 7th bout.

    “Giorgio” almost pulled Three Musketeers back into a tie, by outscoring “Miles”, 7-5, in the 8th bout.  With the score 40-36 in favor of team District 13, the two strong captains crossed swords for the final bout.  Tim had physical advantage able to outreach Brisco; but Brisco had more experience which he poured out en route to District 13‘s victory, 45-37.

    Special appreciation to Coach Mark Logan for refereeing the epee event and all the parents of Amelia Steel and Chester Knights for coming the distance to Fredericksburg, VA in frigid arctic like cold weather to make the scrimmage a memorable event.  Pictures will be forthcoming.

    Also, Dark Horse is very grateful to John and Lucy Bone, Nettie Dunn, and Maura Harrison, for setting up the strips, equipment troubleshooting, bout committee duty, refreshments, and photography.

    Another inter-club scrimmage is being planned in the spring, possibly April 24th.

    On Monday, 23 Feb, Paul Anderson, Nick Dunn, and Gavin Cornell held a fence off to determine who is Dark Horse’s best Cadet foil fencer.  It had been planned that Friday’s scrimmage would determine the fact; however, the results were inconclusive.  So, at practice Monday, the Cadets fenced a preliminary round to warm-up, then a direct elimination round of 15 touch matches.  Paul was triumphant!  He settled the matter by defeating Nick, 15-10.  Paul was awarded a Leon Paul FIE electric foil for his accomplishment by the scrimmage’s sponsor.