Paul Laurence Dunbar High School graduate Lee Kiefer won a gold medal in women’s foil Monday in the Junior World Fencing Championships at Plovdiv, Bulgaria.
Kiefer, a 2012 London Olympian, is in the final year of her junior eligibility.
The win is the eighth Junior World medal for Kiefer, who took silver in 2011, bronze the last two years and holds four team medals at this event. Earlier this year, she also won an NCAA championship, competing for Notre Dame.
In Bulgaria, Kiefer’s opening bout in the table of 32 pitted her against Canada’s Alanna Goldie in a rematch from the NCAA semifinals last month. Kiefer won this bout as well as she capitalized on a 9-4 lead after the second period and out-touched the Canadian, 6-2, for a 15-6 total.
In the table of 16, Kiefer faced Italian two-time Cadet World medalist Erica Cipressa – the only fencer who beat Kiefer in the pools on Saturday. Kiefer held the upper hand this time, though, as she kept the Italian at bay with a 5-1 lead after the first period that grew to 15-6 by the end of the bout.
Kiefer was dominant again in the quarterfinals where she took an early lead against Russia’s Viktoria Alexeeva and never looked back, outscoring her opponent 15-10.
In the semifinals, Kiefer trailed another Russian, Svetlana Tripapina, 3-1 early in the first period, but quickly rebounded to take 14 of the next 18 touches to win the bout, 15-7.
Kiefer’s next opponent, Eleanor Harvey of Canada, upset the reigning Junior World Champion, Camilla Mancini of Italy, and held her own against Kiefer in the gold-medal finals. Both athletes scored four touches each in the first minute.
Kiefer dominated the second period where she scored eight straight to take a commanding lead at 12-4. Although Harvey came back in the final minute, Kiefer closed the bout out with a 15-8 victory.
A tip of the foil to Nicole Jomantas of U.S. Fencing for information provided.
Junior Women’s Foil World Championships
1. Lee Kiefer (Lexington, Ky.)
2. Eleanor Harvey (CAN)
3. Karin Miyawaki (JPN)
5. Pauline Ranvier (FRA)
6. Camila Mancini (ITA)
7. Viktoria Alexeeva (RUS)
8. Anna Szymczak (POL)
20. Jackie Dubrovich (Riverdale, N.J.)
38. Sabrina Massialas (San Francisco, Calif.)