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    Dabawenya fencer wins gold in Pan Am zonals

    Jul 3, 2013
    Fil-Am Lee Bacani Oropilla Kiefer became only the second American to win four straight individual Pan American titles after two-time Olympic champion Mariel Zagunis. Photo from US Fencing Association website

    LEE Bacani Oropilla Kiefer, the half-Filipina fencing sensation from the US, won a fourth gold medal in the Pan American Zonal Championship held at Cartagena, Colombia.

    Kiefer beat fellow London Olympian and teammate Nzingha Prescod, 15-14, to rule the women’s foil event.

    The lovely fencer, whose mother hails from Davao, became only the second American to win four straight individual Pan American titles after two-time Olympic champion Mariel Zagunis (2009 and 2012).

    The victory by Kiefer came a day after she turned 19, according to the US Fencing Association website.

    Martz Angeles Coleman, the US-based aunt of Kiefer, and Davao-based Dr. Janice Bacani Carandang congratulated their niece for her feat.

    “We’re so proud of Lee,” Carandang posted on Facebook.

    The 5-foot-4 daughter of a Filipina doctor from Davao actually led a podium sweep for the US women’s team as Prescod settled for the silver, while four-time Junior World medalist Margaret Lu took home the bronze.

    Kiefer advanced to the quarterfinals of the London Games, but was eliminated by Italian Arianna Errigo.

    In the Pan American Zonals, Kiefer advanced to semifinals after a 14-12 win over Flavia Johana Mormandi of Argentina.

    She then eliminated Lu – her US teammate at the last three stagings of the Junior World Championships – in the semifinals, 15-7, to arrange a gold medal showdown with Prescod, a 15-6 winner over Alanna Goldie of Canada in the other semis pairing.  

    The match up marked the first meeting between Kiefer and Prescod since the Fil-Am won their quarterfinal bout in the North American Cup in St. Louis last October.

    Continue reading below ↓

    The fight was close till the end with Prescod scoring two unanswered touches to tie the score at 14-14.

    Kiefer however, would not to be denied of the win and her place in the Pan American Zonal Championship history.

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    Fil-Am Lee Bacani Oropilla Kiefer became only the second American to win four straight individual Pan American titles after two-time Olympic champion Mariel Zagunis. Photo from US Fencing Association website
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