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Credit: Courtesy of Penn Athletics

Entering the 2024 NCAA Fencing Championships, Penn fencing had not taken home an individual title in the men's foil in 27 years. This year’s final was different; that was guaranteed to change. Quaker seniors Bryce Louie and Blake Broszus each won their semifinal matchup, setting up a title bout that guaranteed a trophy would be coming to Philadelphia.

In reaching this moment, the pair first had to reach the four-team playoff round. Louie dominated, winning 19 of 23 preliminary bouts and earning the top seed, while Broszus took second with 16 wins. Both faced Ivy League rivals in their respective semifinal matchups, as Louie took on Daniel Zhang of Harvard while Broszus matched up against Sam Kumbla of Columbia.

Broszus, who entered the semifinal match on a four-match winning streak, handily defeated Kumbla 15-8, rolling into the finals. Louie also rode a four-match streak into his playoff bout, facing Zhang, who also had a hot foil entering the match. In a back-and-forth battle, Louie finally put Zhang away with a score of 15-11, setting up a final with both sides representing the Red and Blue.

The Quaker contingent in men’s foil guaranteed the first title for Penn since 1997; the question now was who would take it home. Louie, the clear favorite based on his previous performances, looked to end his Penn career on the highest of notes, while Broszus aimed to do the same as the underdog.

Broszus proved to be overmatched by his teammate in the championship bout, as Louie took home the title in a 15-9 victory, making history for the Quakers. Both Louie and Broszus provided Penn with one of its best performances in fencing in school history and the best performance for the Red and Blue this year.