Women’s fencer Justine de Grasse represented North Carolina at the NCAA Fencing Championships this weekend. She was the lone Tar Heel to qualify for the meet and placed 22nd in women's epee.
Participating in the championships was a culmination of a successful season for de Grasse, who received a bronze medal at the ACC Championships in February. She said she was surprised to even be able to compete, as a miscalculation led de Grasse and head coach Ron Miller to believe she would not be included in the field.
But once she learned she would get a chance, she said it meant everything to her.
“This is why I fence,” she said. “The feeling that something you’ve done and worked toward and finally achieved; it was such a relief.”
De Grasse won eight of her 23 bouts at the competition, landing 71 touches. She “won close, but lost big,” according to Miller, which explains her dropping to 22nd overall.