Fencing: Students lunge toward Olympic goals in The Woodlands

Fencing students lunge toward their Olympic goals at Alliance Fencing Academy
Jessica Thow, Oak Ridge High School sophomore, William Smith, A The Woodlands High School freshman, Barbara VanBenthuysen, a The Woodlands High School senior, and Wolfe Crouse, A Willis High School sophomore, before a practice session at Alliance Fencing Academy, 27326 Robinson Road in Oak Ridge North.
Jessica Thow, Oak Ridge High School sophomore, William Smith, A The Woodlands High School freshman, Barbara VanBenthuysen, a The Woodlands High School senior, and Wolfe Crouse, A Willis High School sophomore, before a practice session at Alliance Fencing Academy, 27326 Robinson Road in Oak Ridge North.

Olympic aspirations

The Hurley sisters may have set the bar high for the young fencers who train at Alliance, but they are up for the challenge. A number of Woodlands-area youth have already travelled around the country and the world competing and have high hopes of fencing in college and, someday, in the Olympics.

Barbara VanBenthuysen, a 17-year-old senior at The Woodlands High School, was one of four people selected to represent the U.S. at the Juniors World Fencing Championships in Uzbekistan this year and took eighth place. She’s also been to Slovakia, France, Austria, Spain and Finland for various tournaments.

For VanBenthuysen, fencing started out just as a fun extracurricular activity that she picked up after reading about a girl who fenced in the children’s book series, “The Spiderwick Chronicles.” click here for complete story and photo gallery