NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- Princeton turned in a pair of wins to take the lead after the first day of the 2012 Ivy League Round-Robins, followed closely by Harvard, which finished the day at 2-1.
The first round of the day had high drama, as the Harvard men came back from a 9-3 deficit to edge Penn, 14-13. The decisive win came in epee where Crimson sophomore Michale Raynis downed Penn sophomore Clifford Fishler, 5-2. Raynis is no stranger to pressure packed Ivy bouts as he clinched the 2011 Ivy League Championship in a win versus Yale last season. One of the bouts that keyed the Harvard rally was Valentin Staller's 5-3 win over fellow All-American Evan Prochniak.
Also in the first round, Columbia downed Brown 19-8 for its first win at the Ivy Round-Robins since finishing second in 2009.
Round two saw Princeton join the fray after a bye in round one and the Tigers defeated Penn, 19-8, on the strength of an 8-1 showing in epee.
Round three featured an important showdown between Yale and Harvard as both squads entered with 1-0 records. At one point the overall match was tied at 7-7, but Harvard ultimately earned the win, 15-12. Staller won the pivotal bout that gave the Crimson its 14th point when he took on fellow senior Nathaniel Benzimra. The two were tied 4-4 before Staller landed the final touch for a 5-4 win.
Harvard and Princeton took unbeaten records into their round four meeting that ultimately ended in a 14-13 win for the Tigers. Princeton junior Jonathan Yergler earned the clinching win in his epee win over James Hawrot, 6-3.
Also in round four, Brown bested Penn in a tight contest, 14-13. The Bears' foil squad propelled them to the win with a 6-3 mark, including three wins by Josh Grill.
On the individual leader boards, Staller leads all men's fencers with eight wins on the day against just one loss.
Day two of the Ivy League Fencing Round-Robins begins at 10:00 a.m. on Sunday. The day starts with round five of the event, featuring Yale vs. Princeton, Columbia vs. Harvard and Penn vs. Cornell. Round six will see Yale take on Penn, Brown face Harvard and Princeton square off against Columbia. The day will close with Columbia against Yale, Harvard against Cornell and Brown against Princeton.
Day One – Saturday, February 11
Columbia def. Brown, 19-8 (E: 6-3; F: 6-3; S: 7-2)
Harvard def. Penn, 14-13 (E: 6-3; F: 3-6; S: 5-4)
Yale def. Brown, 17-10 (E: 6-3; F: 6-3; S: 5-4)
Princeton def. Penn, 19-8 (E: 8-1; F: 7-2; S: 4-5)
Penn def. Columbia, 15-12 (E:4-5; F: 6-3; S:5-4)
Harvard def. Yale, 15-12 (E: 3-6; F: 5-4; S: 7-2)
Princeton def. Harvard, 14-13 (E: 6-3; F: 5-4; S: 3-6)
Brown def. Penn, 14-13 (E: 4-5; F: 6-3; S: 4-5)
1. Princeton, 2-0
2. Harvard, 2-1
3. Yale, 1-1
3. Columbia, 1-1
5. Brown, 1-2
6. Penn, 1-3