Results from this week’s tournaments were about the same as before. Won just a single bout in my pool, once again defeating That Guy I Always Beat from my club. The flow of our bout this time was different than before, in that he actually scored the first three touches. Down 3-0 to the person I had my best chance of defeating . . . panic and frustration came for a visit, but I walked those feelings back down to the end of the strip, exhaled, told those feelings that I’d get back to them later, and decided to make an adjustment. He was getting me with simple beat attacks — all right, keep distance and lunge. Landed off target more often than on, but I was able to get five of the final six touches and eek out my one victory for the day.

Was also pleased with the number of touches I scored in most of my other bouts. I tied two bouts at four against opponents who routinely beat me, quite handily, during practice. All I had going for me was my game of rapid varying footwork, with a jab when I saw I’d drawn my opponent in too close. (My lunges are still too slow and predictable to be effective against anyone above the novice level.) Couldn’t close the deal either time, but getting to four both times was a significant accomplishment. Got a couple touches in two other bouts against very skilled opponents, but only one in the only pool bout where I was disappointed with myself. My footwork/jab game only works when I demonstrate patience, only attack when I see the moment’s right. In this bout, I forced myself to attack out of nervous energy — a bad tactic for me, or anyone for that matter. Scoring only one touch in that bout was a direct result of bad tactics.

Only scored three touches in my DE, facing one of the skilled opponents from my pool. He was faster and more experienced — tried a couple different approaches, but my opponent already had figured out that I didn’t have an effective parry, and used that weakness against me. Tactics do no good if you can’t eliminate what your opponent wants to do.

Feel like I can build off my results from Saturday (especially since, thank you very much, I did manage to recover quite nicely, thanks to extensive stretching, several ice packs, and some assistance from Doctor Advil). Need a parry/riposte game — during practice, I want to make two parry/ripostes for every attack I make. Second, make my lunges more efficient — I’m not going to get any faster, but I can be more precise. And above all, be patient — only a fool rushes in to trouble, and if there’s one thing I don’t want to do when fencing, it’s looking foolish.


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