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May 7, 2013

Press Photo

BCF medal winners Christian Cochran, bronze, Trevor Longstreet, gold, and Sean Smith, silver.

More than a dozen students arrived at the Wellness Center at The Baptist College of Florida (BCF) and began putting on their equipment as they prepared to participate in the first fencing tournament ever conducted in Graceville, Florida. BCF began a recreational fencing class in the fall of 2012, with Glen Richards, father of BCF freshman Cole Richards, as the instructor and coach. The elder Richards began fencing nearly ten years ago when his son wanted to begin the sport and would need a partner with whom he could practice.

As the crowd was greeted by BCF Dean of Students Roger Richards, the rules of the game were explained to the audience and the matchups were announced followed by a prayer of thanksgiving and safety. Both Roger and Glen, sons of BCF Professor Emeritus Wiley Richards, officiated the bouts as some of the players were eliminated during the single-elimination tournament. Excitement increased as eight players advanced to the semi-finals. Finally four fencers remained undefeated to compete in the medal rounds. Christian Cochran defeated graduating senior Katrina Bierman to earn the bronze medal. Sean Smith faced off against veteran FSU fencer Trevor Longstreet. Decisively, the three winners took their places on the pedestals as the bronze medal was hung around Christian's neck, the silver went to Sean, and Trevor received the gold medal.

After the competition was over, students and family members proudly congratulated the winners, with many of the audience members inquiring about joining the class next fall. The class is open to all students, faculty, staff, alumni, and their families. For more information on becoming a BCF student and BCF fencing, contact 850-263-3261 ext. 477.

Press Photo

Final round of competition against the top two fencers, Trevor Longstreet and Sean Smith.