Vancouver fencer just misses Olympic medal

Seth Kelsey scored upset to make medal round

By Greg Jayne, Columbian Opinion Editor



Vancouver native Seth Kelsey looks to the crowd after his match against Estonia's Nikolai during the men's individual epee fencing competition at the 2012 Summer Olympics Wednesday in London.

Vancouver’s Seth Kelsey fell just short of a bronze medal in men’s epee Wednesday at the London Olympics.

Kelsey, trying to become the first American since 1928 to win a medal in the event, lost 12-11 in overtime to Jinsun Jung of South Korea in the bronze-medal match. The defeat capped a stirring run into medal contention for Kelsey, who entered the competition as the No. 17 seed.

Kelsey, 30, grew up in Brush Prairie and attended Oregon Episcopal School, where he first took up fencing. He is a graduate of the Air Force Academy and is a captain in the Air Force, living and training in Colorado Springs, Colo.

In his first match, Kelsey defeated Guojie Li of China 8-7 in overtime in the Round of 32. It was the first individual victory in the Games for the three-time Olympian.

In the Round of 16, Kelsey delivered a major upset — a 15-11 win over top-seeded Nokolai Novosjolov of Estonia. In the quarterfinals, he beat Silvio Fernandez of Venezuela, 15-9.

That put Kelsey into the semifinals, leaving him one victory short of an Olympic medal. But a 6-5 overtime loss to Ruben Limardo Gascon of Venezuela sent him to the bronze-medal match, where another overtime defeat ended his medal hopes.