Eliza Stone '13 (Photo: Courtesy Office of Athletic Communications)

The Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro are more than two years away, but several alumni athletes have started training with an eye toward 2016. Last weekend, fencer Eliza Stone ’13 recorded an impressive result on the World Cup circuit, reaching the semifinals and tying for third place at the Dakar Saber World Cup in Senegal. It was her first individual medal in a World Cup event.

Stone upset fourth-seeded Irene Vecchi of Italy to reach the final four before losing a close bout (15-13) to France’s Charlotte Lembach in the semifinals.

As Princeton fans may remember, Stone won the NCAA women’s saber championship in March and helped the combined Tiger women’s and men’s teams earn their first NCAA title. She had given up international competition during her sophomore and junior years at Princeton, but since graduating with a degree in politics, the Chicago native has returned with gusto, making her mark by winning bronze with the United States in the team portion of the Senior World Championships. Among American saber competitors, she currently ranks third, behind two-time Olympic champion Mariel Zagunis and Ibtihaj Muhammad.

In May, Stone told the Chicago Tribune that she’s put her med-school ambitions on hold in order to make a run at a spot on the U.S. team for Rio. “After my junior year, I decided I wanted to continue fencing beyond college,” she said. “I realized I couldn’t live with myself if I stopped.”

Last weekend also went well for Stone’s younger sister, Gracie ’16, a fellow sabreuse who helped the Princeton women earn their fifth consecutive Ivy League championship. Brother Robert ’14 and the Princeton men placed second in the Ivy standings.

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