Olympic and World medalists will headline a field of 170 competitors this weekend as Team USA takes on athletes from nearly 30 nations at the Baltimore Women's Sabre World Cup. Competition will begin on Friday and conclude Sunday in the Grand Ballroom at the Baltimore Convention Center.
Tickets are available at www.2018sabreworldcup.eventbrite.com.
Individual rounds will be held on Friday and Saturday with the team competition to take place on Sunday.
Schedule is as follows:
Friday Jan. 26
10 a.m. Individual Pool Rounds
Saturday Jan. 27
10 a.m. - 5:40 p.m. Individual Table of 64 - Quarter-finals
6 p.m. Semifinals and Final Matches
Sunday Jan. 28
9 a.m. - 2 p.m. Team Direct Elimination Rounds
2:30 p.m. Team Bronze and Gold Medal Finals
Team USA includes at least 30 athletes with 2016 Olympic medalists Dagmara Wozniak (Avenel, N.J.) and Monica Aksamit (Matawan, N.J.) leading the squad.
The top eight fencers in the world will be among the individual competitors, including World No. 1 Olga Kharlan (UKR), 2016 Olympic Champion Yana Egorian (RUS) and 2012 Olympic Champion Jiyeon Kim (KOR).
This season has seen nine different women's sabre fencers stand on the podium at the three events last fall and nearly all will be among the contenders for gold in Baltimore.
Rio Olympian Rossella Gregorio (ITA) won the first World Cup of the season in October at the Orleans World Cup in France where she defeated her Rio teammate, Loreta Gulotta (ITA), in the finals.
Four-time Olympic medalist Olga Kharlan (UKR ) won the season's next two events, defeating Gregorio in the finals of the Sint-Niklaas World Cup in November in Belgium and winning her 13th career Grand Prix title in Cancun in December. The reigning World Champion and World No. 1 has been nearly unstoppable since last summer, posting a 19-1 record with her sole loss coming in a 15-14 bout against fellow Ukrainian Alina Komashchuk in Orleans.
Two-time Olympic Champion Yana Egorian (RU S) defeated Kharlan at the Rio Olympic Games where Egorian took gold and Kharlan took bronze, but Kharlan has won their last three matchups, including a 15-14 victory in the semis in Cancun and a 15-5 win in the semis in Sint-Niklaas. With two bronzes to her credit this year, Egorian will be looking for her first gold on the circuit since the Seoul Grand Prix in March of 2017.
Last year's gold medalist at this event, Cecilia Berder (FRA ), will return to defend her title. Berder won her second individual Senior World medal in Leipzig last year, taking bronze and following with another bronze at the Cancun Grand Prix.
Former World No. 1 Anna Marton (HUN ) will be another top fencer to watch in Baltimore. Now ranked No. 2 behind Kharlan, Marton has found herself one bout short of the podium at the last three events with a trio of fifth-place finishes and will be looking for a breakthrough on American soil.
London Olympic Champion Jiyeon Kim (KOR ) won silver when this event was held in Brooklyn last year and is aiming for her first podium finish of the new season.
Team USA U.S. Olympic medalists Wozniak and Aksamit are each seeking an individual medal in front of a home crowd.
A seven-time individual World Cup medalist, Wozniak finished eighth in Cancun and took a top-eight finish at U.S. World Cups in both 2014 and 2017, the latter of which included Wozniak's first career individual win over Egorian.
Aksamit has earned podium finishes at the World Cup and Pan American level and is hoping for a return to the medal stand in Baltimore.
With 30+ fencers, Team USA has any number of athletes poised for a career-best moment in Baltimore. The young squad includes several past Junior and Cadet World medalists who are aiming to use this event as their stepping stone to success on the senior circuit, including 2017 Cadet World medalist Elizabeth Tartakovsky (Livingston, N.J.), 2016 Cadet Mixed Team Champion Kara Linder (Chandler, Ariz.) and two-time Junior World team medalist Francesca Russo (Wayne, N.J.)
The full roster of U.S. entries is as follows:
Monica Askamit (Matawan, N.J.)
Alexis Anglade (Alpharetta, Ga.)
Mikaela Avakian (Arcadia, Calif.)
Maia Chamberlain (Menlo Park, Calif.)
Casey Chan (Cresskill, N.J.)
Veronica Czyzewski (Caldwell, N.J.)
Chloe Fox-Gitomer (Portland, Ore.)
Chloe Gouhin (Blacklick, Ohio)
Imogen Harrison (Portland, Ore.)
Sydney Hirsch (Woodbridge, Conn.)
Keli Izenson (Atlanta, Ga.)
Morgan Jenkins (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.)
Ryan Jenkins (San Juan Capistrano, Calif.)
Tori Johnson (Peachtree City, Ga.)
Marta Lasota (Silver Spring, Md.)
Kara Linder (Chandler, Ariz.)
Celina Merza (Wayne, N.J.)
Sarah Merza (Wayne, N.J.)
Violet Michel (Cambridge, Mass.)
Zara Moss (Cranberry Township, Pa.)
Skyla Powers (Decatur, Ga.)
Francesca Russo (Wayne, N.J.)
Leanne Singleton-Comfort (Marysville, Calif.)
Eliza Stone (Princeton, N.J.)
Gracie Stone (Princeton, N.J.)
Elizabeth Tartakovsky (Livingston, N.J.)
Daniella Timofeyev (Antelope, Calif.)
Dagmara Wozniak (Avenel, N.J.)