Olympics: Fencing

South Koreans seek fencing investigation

Shin A-Lam reacts after her loss in the semifinals. (Max Rossi/Reuters)

Via the Associated Press:

The South Korea Olympic Committee has asked the IOC to investigate how fencer Shin A-Lam was denied a women’s epee medal.

Officials said Friday they want fencing’s governing body, the FIE, to apologize, “reinstate” her honor and “restore the pride” of Korean people.

Read the full story here.

U.S. men’s sabre team out of medals

American Daryl Homer, right, competes in the men's team sabre against Alexey Yakimenko of Russia. (Dmitry Lovetsky/Associated Press)

The U.S. men’s sabre team was eliminated from medal contention by Russia, 45-33, Friday in the quarterfinals.

The Americans — Daryl Homer, James Williams and Timothy Morehouse — went down 5-2 after the first bout and never led the Russians, who will face Romania in a semifinal.

Korea and Italy will square off in the other semifinal.

The Americans took on China in a placement match and lost that, 45-28.

That means the Chinese will take on Germany to determine fifth place and the United States will take on Belarus for seventh place.

South Korea’s Kim wins women’s sabre gold medal

Kim Ji Yeon celebrates her victory over Mariel Zagunis in a semifinal bout. (Alberto Pizzoli/GettyImages)

Kim Ji Yeon, the woman who dethroned two-time American Olympic gold medalist Mariel Zagunis, won the gold medal for South Korea in the women’s individual sabre competition Wednesday night.

She beat defending world champion Sofya Velikaya of Russia, 15-9, to cap off the biggest surprise of the night at the fencing venue in Hyde Park.

Kim, seeded fifth, knocked off the Nos. 1 and 2 fencers in the world in the sabre. Her comeback against Zagunis was monumental. Down 12-5, she reeled off 10 of the next 11 points to stun Zagunis, who finished without a medal after losing the bronze-medal bout.

Fencer wins Venezuela’s first gold medal since 1968

Ruben Limardo Gascon of Venezuela celebrates his victory. (Photo by Hannah Johnston/Getty Images)

Ruben Gascon Limardo defeated Norway’s Bartosz Piasecki in the individual epee event, becoming Venezuela’s first gold medalist since the 1968 Mexico City Games.

Gascon Limardo won 15-10. He immediately began sprinting across the stage and eventually wound up holding up the Venezuelan flag and parading it around a packed arena as Queen’s “We Are The Champions” (of the World) blared throughout the place. Pretty cool, actually, to see.

Wesley falls in bronze medal match in men’s epee

Jung Jin-Sun sprinted across the mat, jumping into his coach’s arms, after having beaten American epee fencer Seth Wesley for the bronze medal in the individual competition.

Jung and Wesley needed sudden death to decide the bout, which was decided, 12-11, in favor of the South Korean. Jung bawled uncontrollably afterward he was so taken aback by his victory.

Wesley played his same cat-and-mouse game, delaying, counterattacking, never really being decisive when it mattered. He also lost a sudden-death match in the semifinals, delaying and feeling his opponent out way too much for the crowd’s liking.

Both fencers were booed before the sudden death period.

Mariel Zagunis falls in sabre semifinals

Mariel Zagunis (right) reacts after conceding a hit against South Korea's Kim Ji Yeon. (AFP PHOTO / ALBERTO PIZZOLI)

South Korean fencer Kim Ji Yeon rallies to upset American Mariel Zagunis, 15-13, in the semifinals of women’s sabre. Zagunis was the two-time defending gold medalist and carried the U.S. flag in the Opening Ceremonies.

Zagunis will face Olga Kharlan of the Ukraine in the bronze medal match at 2:40 p.m. Kim will meet Russia’s Sofya Velikaya in the gold medal match.

Mariel Zagunis takes commanding lead in semifinal

Mariel Zagunis, the U.S. Olympic flag-bearer at the Opening Ceremonies and a woman who won more gold in the last two Olympics than any American fencer had since 1904, has jumped out to an 9-4 lead over South Korean Kim Ji Yeon after one session in the women’s individual sabre semifinals.

Zagunis’s attacking and counterattacking has seemed to overwhelm her South Korean opponent through the match’s first three minutes. First fencer to 15 or the leader after three sessions advances to the gold medal match.