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Around the Piste: Steffen, Gauthier to compete for bronze

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Check back for live updates of some of the bouts we're watching throughout the day. You can stream all the action at NBCOlympics.com.



Semifinals


Epee heavyweights Gauthier Grumier and Geza Imre were the first to square off on the piste. It took the men nearly a full minute to score a point on a simultaneous touch in the first; the action picked up from there with Imre building a three point lead.


Grumier battled back to tie the bout at 9 but Imre quickly took a 14-12 advantage. The Hungarian scored the decisive point on a simultaneous touch as he knocked out the favorite from contending for gold.


Steffen and Park headlined the second match and Park made his presence felt early. He commanded much of the bout as he bested Steffen 15-9.


Quarterfinals


Steffen continued his day against Frenchman Yannick Borel. He took a 6-2 lead early on and went on to win 15-10.


Grumier continued to dominate as he won his bout against Kazuyasu Minobe 15-8 while Geza Imre defeated Estonian fencer Nikolai Novosjolov 15-9.


Sangyoung Park drubbed Max Heinzer of Switzerland 15-4.


Round of 16


Gauthier Grumier continued his medal aspirations against Egypt's Fayez where he won by a comfortable margin, 15-9.


Steffen drew fourth ranked Ukranian fencer Bogdan Nikishin. Neither men scored a point in the first period however the action quickly picked up with Steffen scoring 10 points to Nikishin's 4 in the second.


It appeared Steffen had an easy victory but Nikishin stormed back flipping the script and scoring 10 points in the third to Steffen's 4 to tie the bout. The overtime period didn't last long as Steffen scored a quick touch to advance.



Imre returned to take on fellow teammate Gabor Boczko, winning 15-8.


Garozzo found himself in some trouble early trailing 5-8 to Sangyoung Park of South Korea at the end of the first. Park would take advantage, winning the bout 15-12.


Round of 32


Team USA fencer Jason Pryor took to the piste against Benjamin Steffen of Switzerland. Pryor and Steffen looked impressive early, trading points throughout the bout. Tied at 9, Steffen jumped ahead and would stay ahead as the fencers scored consecutive simultaneous touches until Steffen reach 15.



Schwantes scored the first two points in his bout with Grumier, much to the delight of the home crowd. He ended the first period ahead 4-1. Grumier quickly regained control scoring six consecutive points while keeping Schwantes from scoring until midway through the third period. Grumier left no doubt as he won 15-7.


Hungarian fencer and gold contender Geza Imre faced John Edison Rodriguez of Columbia. Rodriguez kept things close early but Imre went on to win 15-9.


Italy's Enrico Garozzo and Jinsun Jung of South Korea scored five points combined midway through the second period in a closely contested battle. Garozzo eventually managed to pull away and win 15-11.


Defending gold medalist Ruben Limardo exited early suffering a 15-5 drubbing at the hands of Egypt's Ayman Fayez.



Canada's Maxime Brinck-Croteau faced off against Vadim Anokhin, ranked 7th in the world, of Russia. Brinck-Croteau, the 44th ranked fencer, scored 14 points but Anokhin mounted an impressive comeback to force overtime where he scored the winning point.


France's Daniel Jerent was a surprise early exit at the hands of Francisco Limardo. Jerent, ranked sixth, fell in a tight bout.


Round of 64


Brazil sent three fencers to the piste to start the day. One of them, Guilherme Melaragno, jumped out to an early 6-4 lead over China's Yunlong Jiao, a surprise for many reasons but none more so than the fact that Jiao is ranked 55th. Melaragno is 111th.


Midway through the third period, Melaragno had managed to maintain his two point advantage but Jiao tied the score with a minute left in regulation. Jiao went on to secure the winning point with 9 seconds on the clock.


Melaragno's teammate, Nicolas Ferreira, lost his bout 9-15. The lone Brazilian to advance was Athos Schwantes who defeated Jiri Beran to draw gold medal favorite Gauthier Grumier.



Abdulaziz Alshatti, who is an Independent Olympic Athlete, had an impressive showing against 46th ranked Hungarian fencer Andras Redli. In the waning seconds of the bout, Redli held the 14-13 advantage.


Alshatti had already scored two points to put himself in a position to push the bout into overtime. Unfortunately for Alshatti, he simply ran out of time as all Redli had to do was retreat a few steps as the last second ticked off the clock.



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