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Fencing Interview: Senior Ben Jackson

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The LOLHS fencing team. Ben Jackson is pictured fourth from the right in the third row up.

The LOLHS fencing team. Ben Jackson is pictured fourth from the right in the third row up.

The LOLHS fencing team. Ben Jackson is pictured fourth from the right in the third row up.

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EZ: Describe how you were introduced to the sport of fencing. Did you start in high school?

BJ: I was introduced to the sport through friends in freshman year, mainly by Jeff Zhang, who was adamant that I join, but I didn’t get a chance to join until sophomore year.  That’s when I really started to actually learn how to fence.

EZ: Briefly explain to those who are unfamiliar with the sport how it is played and its rules.

BJ: Foil fencing is a sport in which your goal is to hit your opponent with the weapon’s tip while maintaining right of way.  In foil, you must do so on a 5’ by 20’ strip, which limits your movement to a fairly strict line.  This makes it so the best way to get a point is to attack your opponent in a linear fashion, with whatever additional strategy you see fit, so long as it’s a legal move, of course.  So, the game mostly focuses on using the rules correctly in order to maintain right of way, what determines that you are the person attacking at any one given time, while taking it away from your opponent.

EZ: Reflect on this year’s season. How many meets did you have? How did this year’s seventh place finish in the State Tournament compare to other years?

BJ: I can’t really reflect on how many meets we had as I don’t really know, unfortunately.  A lot, probably.  We did, however, go to approximately six tournaments, where our fencers did incredibly well.  Kathryn got 1st in our JV tournament for Women’s Foil, I got 4th for Men’s Foil, Kiran got 6th (I think), and in the Winter Classic Chris Kirk got 4th and I got 6th for Men’s Foil.  This was the second time this team has gotten into the State Championship in the last 10 years, so it was incredibly exciting to be a part of that!

EZ: Any plans on continuing fencing after high school?

BJ: Of course!  I’m hoping to join the National Fencing Association, the USFA, for my college years so I can continue to fence in tournaments and (hopefully) grow as a fencer.

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Fencing Interview: Senior Ben Jackson