Happy Birthday Hans Zimmer and John Powell
Season of Music
First Foil and Epee Scrimmage 2014-2015 Season
At the heart of fencing is music (timing, tempo, rhythm), physics (acceleration, inertia, mass, velocity, time, friction, pressure), math (distance, height, length, width, angles), and temperament (patience, relax, tension, concentration). On 19 September 2014, boys and girls who fence foil and epee at Dark Horse Fencing Club came together for the first in a series of scrimmages, which we’re dedicating to a “Season of Music”. Dark Horse Fencing Club will dedicate four scrimmages during the 2014-2015 fencing season to a Season of Music in which we honor great American movie music soundtrack composers. Music of these master composers inspire an array of quick, rapid, tempo-changing footwork, ideal for training today’s fencing champions. In recognition of their birthday in September, Friday’s scrimmage was in honor of Hans Zimmer and John Powell.
At the conclusion of the preliminary seeding round of the combined Youth and Cadet foil event, lefty Sam ““Storm’n”” Morgan earned the #1 seed with three victories (+7 indicator); Nick “Thorn” Dunn earned the #2 seed with three victories (0 indicator); Paul ““Brisco”” Anderson, #3 seed, two victories (+3 indicator); Carter “Panther” Harrison, 4th seed, two victories (0 indicator), and lefty Anna “Stryker” Dunn, 5th seed.
In the direct elimination quarterfinal round, “Storm’n”, Thorn and “Brisco” received byes, hence Stryker and Panther dueled. Panther leapt out to a 5-0 lead before Stryker struck Panther for a point. At the end of the first of three two-minute periods, with the objective to reach 10 points first, the score was Panther 8, Stryker 1. The quick-tempo action of first period play changed to a slow-pace rhythm during the second period. Stryker slowed the tempo down and her tempo-change surprised and frustrated “Panther’s” desire to maintain the initiative. The second period was mostly Stryker’s. She succeeded in closing the gap somewhat by the end of period. With the score 9-4 in Panther’s favor, entering the final two-minute period, Stryker realized she lacked the time to repeat her second period success unless she increased the tempo gradually to find the sweet spot in her efforts, but still below the threshold that would enable “Panther” to score the final match point. It was not to be though. With increased tempo she launched a quick attack, which “Panther” succeeded in parrying and riposting for the 10th point and match win. With victory, “Panther” rested, rehydrated and prepared for his semifinal match with the other lefty, “Storm’n”.
The first semifinal match, however, was fought between Thorn (2nd seed), and “Brisco” (3rd seed). In their preliminary bout, Thorn narrowly prevailed, 5-4. “Brisco” though was not rattled. He carefully composed a new strategy, which proved highly effective in the 1st period. At the end of the 1st period, the score was ““Brisco”” 6, “Thorn” 1. As had happened in the previous match, “Thorn” chose a different strategy to slowdown the tempo, which served well his second intention efforts. By the end of the second period, “Thorn” closed the gap somewhat but not enough, ““Brisco”” 9, “Thorn” 5. “Déjà vu, all over again”, the third period was reminiscent of the previous match, as “Brisco” quickly scored the final point to win in the match, in an upset, 10-5.
In the other semifinal match, Panther was drenched by “Storm’n”, as he was caught in a flash flood of hits — eight straight points – before scoring two in a row. In less than one period, “Storm’n” added “Panther” as a trophy, 10-3.
Fast as the previous match was, the final match between “Storm’n” and “Brisco” was antithesis. Both fencers chose slow tempo and rhythm, feeling each other out with feints and invitations. Neither fencer wanted to make the first mistake by attacking. “Storm’n” highly respected “Brisco”’s ability to fight second intention, while “Brisco”, in turn, highly respected “Storm’n”’s quicker speed, greater reach and strength, and unmatchable left-handed skill. If the much shorter in stature “Brisco” had a chance, it was in slowing the game down, controlling a slow tempo and correct distance, while patiently waiting out “Storm’n” to make the first and hopefully last fatal mistake by attacking an irresistible but yet defendable target.
When the first two-minute period ended, “Storm’n” had scored one and the only point of the match so far. “Brisco” was still in the game though. The second period was “Brisco”’s turn. Again his strategy was clearly evident and successful. The only point scored was “Brisco”’s. With the score only 1-1, the “David versus Goliath” match entered what we all expected to be a decisive period. Surprisingly, “Storm’n” continued to play a cautious game instead of using the last two minutes to try a couple of blistering fast attacks. Even so, it didn’t hurt either fencer, though “Brisco” scored the next point, but “Storm’n” shot back with one, also. As regulation time expired, the two were tied at two-a-piece – “inconceivable”. The timekeeper now flipped a coin. “Brisco” won the coin flip and gained an advantage. The fencers entered one-minute, sudden death overtime knowing that if either “Brisco” held off “Storm’n” from scoring one point or if “Brisco” scored one point, “Brisco” would be victorious.
“Storm’n” put pressure upon “Brisco” with excellent time management, by investing practically the entire one minute overtime period posturing, inviting, deceiving, and reconnoitering for a weakness until at the very last second he saw an exposed weakness and hastily prepared, a direct fleche attack. He was just one step too far away though, as he launched the last attack. Just the extra step – distance — “Brisco” needed to detect, characterize, parry and riposte for a superfluous score. With a lot of “how-to-beat-a-lefty” training over the past several months, “Brisco” finally mastered the most difficult Cadet lefty opponent he’s ever fenced. Final score, 3-2, “Brisco” was awarded first prize, the last but most special of Coach-Emeritus Franklin’s electric foils, with the coach’s name engraved inside the bell guard. Second place prize, Hans Zimmer’s composed soundtrack to the movie “Rush”, went to “Storm’n”.
The epee event’s matches were “fast and furious” compared with the slow-paced foil event’s final match. After the preliminary round for seeding, Blake “Blade” Traylor was 1st seed; Sam “Storm’n” Morgan, 2nd seed; and Cory “Billy” Mitchell, 3rd seed. “Storm’n” and “Billy” dueled in the only semi-final match, as “Blake” advanced directly to the finals by nature of his outstanding preliminary round fencing.
The semi-final match went the full distance — three, three-minute periods, 15-point match. At the conclusion of the first period, “Storm’n” built a commanding, 8-3 lead. During the second period, “Billy” almost turned the tide, outscoring his opponent, 5-4, with the result Storm’n’s lead was cut, 12-8. The final period was exciting as both fencers scored well, but “Billy” could not hold back the storm. “Storm’n’ prevailed, 15-10.
The final match started calmly enough as “Blade” built a 5-1 lead by the end of the 1st period. During the one minute break gray clouds gathered and the wind seemed to whip up as “Storm’n scored the first three points of the 2nd period, making the score 5-4. “Blade” didn’t see a threat in the gathering storm as he quickly retaliated with three points of his own. By the end of the second period, with gale storm warnings posted, the score was 8-5 in “Blade’s” favor. The final period saw “Storm’n” wreak havoc as he outscored “Blade” to tie the match by the conclusion of regulation time. With the score tied 10 all, the scorekeeper flipped another coin. “Blade” won the coin flip for the advantage. Once again, “Storm’n” resorted to excellent time management, putting pressure upon “Blade” until the last two seconds. Launching a fleche attack, as he did in the final match of the foil event, “Storm’n” landed the decisive tie-breaking point this time, without incurring a double touch. Victory – Sam “Storm’n” Morgan, 11-10, and with victory he received the last of Coach-Emeritus Franklin’s replacement electric epee blades as 1st prize. As runner-up, “Blade” received a copy of John Powell’s movie soundtrack “Green Zone”.
Our second of four Season of Music foil and epee scrimmage is scheduled for Friday, October 10, 2014. We will honor the birthday of movie music soundtrack composers Steve Jablonsky and Michael Giacchino (Star Trek into Darkness). Join us. The foil event is scheduled from 1300-1500 (1-3pm); and the epee event follows at 1500.