Our first tournament of the season is Round 1 of the GHSFL (Georgia High School Fencing League) regular season on 9 September.
Because the league is too large for a single school to host all the fencers, each regular season round consists of three tournaments with about a third of the schools competing in each tournament. In Round 1, Pope competes at Alpharetta.
In the week before each tournament, the Tournament’s page in the Calendar section is updated to provide directions, start times and the Pope roster. On the day after the tournament, the page is updated to include highlights of the tournament. To find the tournament page, go to this site’s Calendar menu and choose the round you are interested in (e.g. Round 1 Tournament 9 Sep 2017). The Calendar section itself is a Google Calendar that includes tournaments, practices and other Pope Fencing events.
At this week’s practice, we need fencers to indicate on the sign in sheet if they are, or are not, available to compete in the tournament. You have no idea how challenging it is to get every fencer to either put a check mark in the Yes columns or an “X” in the No column (but I am ready to be proved wrong). All returning fencers who say they are available will be placed on the roster. New fencers who say they are available will be placed on the roster as long as the coaches believe they are ready to compete (the coaches will let you know at practice). Any new fencers who are not ready to compete should still attend the tournament as spectators so that they can see how a tournament works and to cheer on their teammates.
As you will see on the tournament page, the start times for the tournament are:
- 7:30 – Sign in opens
- 8:15 – Referee meeting
- 8:30 – Men’s sign in closes
- 10:00 – Women’s sign in closes
Fencers should arrive at least 30 minutes before sign in closes to give them time to sign in, have their masks and glove checked, and warm up. Referees and score keepers should arrive in time to attend the referee meeting. The men should start fencing at about 8:45. Women should be ready to fence at about 10:15, but many will need to wait for men’s pools to finish and free up strips, this might take until 11:00.
The first tournament of the season is usually a little smaller than average, so it should not be unusually long. I expect we should be cheering the Pope medal winners before 4 PM. We expect all Pope fencers to stay until the end so they can support their teammates.