Great Neck South's Skyler Chin eyes epee gold in Nassau

Great Neck South fencer Skyler Chin competes in Great Neck South fencer Skyler Chin competes in the boys epee competition at the Brentwood Invitational. (Dec. 14, 2013) Photo Credit: Steven Ryan

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Skyler Chin started this season by winning a gold medal.

If the Great Neck South junior has his way, he will also end the season by winning one.

Chin took first in epee at this season's Jeff Wolfe Holiday Fencing Tournament at Brentwood, and began the regular season by winning 15 consecutive bouts.

Though he lost for the first time on Friday night against Jericho, he still went 2-1 in the match to improve his record to 17-1 this season.

"I want to make All-Long Island and All-County this season," Chin said, adding he is "confident" he can win gold at the Nassau individual championships.

He is nationally ranked in both the under-17 and under-20 age groups by the United States Fencing Association and has also received an A-rating from the body.

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Chin has previously fenced in the Junior Olympics and at under-17 and under-20 national tournaments, and credits these competitions with improving his skills.

He said those competitions "raised the level of my technical ability," and were "good for my confidence."

Despite his experience, skill and knowledge, South coach Josh Baravarian says Chin remains open to advice.

Chin is "very coachable, even though he knows so much," Baravarian said.

In addition to his individual accomplishments, Chin has played an important role for a South boys team looking to repeat as county champions.

The Rebels are 8-1 overall and Chin leads an epee unit that has won over 75 percent of its bouts this season.

Baravarian says Chin has helped this record by both fencing well himself and by helping coach his teammates.

"He has so much to teach," Baravarian said of Chin. "He has helped Alex [Hall] and Kevin [Ko] become two of the top epee fencers in Nassau County," Baravarian said.

The individual Nassau championships are Feb. 1 at Cold Spring Harbor, and the county team tournament final is Feb. 8 at Great Neck North.

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