Temple's fencing team ranked 5th in the nation

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Fencing rarely makes the back pages or the highlight shows, but if the fencers at Temple University keep doing what they're doing that may change.

Fencing's roots trace back to the 15th century when a form of ancient military training evolved.

"That's what a lot of fencing is, exploiting the others' weakness and playing on your strengths and almost having a dance with them," says Owls captain Quinn Duwelius. "A lot of people call fencing physical chess. It's not going out there to hit whatever, there's a lot of strategy to the game."

At Temple University, the women's team is on point, very quietly rising to the top of the ranks.

"I definitely get that every single day on campus," says Jr. captain Marielle Luke. "'Wait, you guys have a fencing team?' Yeah. 'Wait, you guys are top five in the nation?' Yeah, we are!"

Legendary coach and former two-time Olympic fencer, Dr. Nikki Franke, started the program 48 years ago.

But this is the highest-ranking the team has ever had.

"The team has always had 'making a top five' as their goal," says the coach.

"They were very excited and now the key is to maintain that. We're not a very common sport," says Luke. "But we're here, and we dominate."
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