SportzEdge Tonight’s Erika Wachter tells the story of a young fan who created a fencing club in Milford, which now teaches the sport to pupils young and old.
If you love fencing and want to get involved in an Olympic sport, this might be the place for you.
“A lot of intimidation tactics go into it,” said Cellan Whaley, a high school freshman.
“It’s a lot of complex footwork,” said Molly Finnegan, a fourth grader.
“It’ll make you more athletic, it’ll stretch your thinking,” said Andrew Hiza, a freshman.
The game is Physical Chess. Each move calculated. Each strike strategically placed.
But for a club that requires so much thought….the idea that launched it, was simple.
“I saw Star Wars, so, yeah, that was a lot of light sabers and stuff,” said Hiza, the club’s founder.
And since you can’t battle with real light sabers, Andrew Hiza founded the next best thing… a fencing club.
“I thought maybe three or four people would come,” said Hiza. “But we actually got a pretty big turnout and that makes me happy.”
That was four years ago…now, the Milford Fencing Club has taught more than 200 members…ranging from ages 8-75 years old.
“It’s unique to everybody. Everyone can do it their own different way,” said Whaley.
There are three different weapons used in the sport of fencing each requiring it’s own technique; But no matter which style you choose, the basics of the sport stay the same.
“It’s just as much mental as it is athletic, you’ve got to be ahead of your opponent in both ways,” said Hiza.
That basic lesson is re-learned each day in their duels; the place where Club competitors are growing the most.
“It’s a lot of help working with more people. You’re helping them grow better by showing them their weaknesses and their strengths and then telling them your weakensses and strengths and what they can do to beat you,” said seventh-grader Ben Kissinger.
And with that kind of team-first attitude, they’re all winning.