Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2009 | 7 p.m.
Two pairs of local siblings enjoyed successful weekends while competing for the Fencing Academy of Southern Nevada on Saturday and Sunday.
Twin sisters Cassandra and Andrea Dilibero of Summerlin each won bronze medals in the under-14 epee and foil categories, respectively at the United States Fencing Association's South Coast Invitational in Los Alamitos, Calif.
Also, Centennial Hills resident Dylan Brown, 15, won gold in men's open foil category at the Orange Coast Invitational in Orange County, Calif. His older brother Alec Brown, 18, won bronze in the men's open epee category.
The Browns said the medals were extra special because they were against fencers of all ages, including some who had competing in the sport for decades.
"They usually think they will win because they are more experienced, but it's fun to see how they react when you surprise them," Dylan Brown said.
Alec Brown said the highlight of his weekend came when he defeated a high-profile fencing instructor from Southern California.
"Some of those guys don't take you seriously until they realize they're losing to you," Alec Brown said. "Then they realize 'I have to take this kid seriously.' They think 'I'm an adult and been competing 30 years so I can beat them in my sleep.' That tends to be their attitude."
Alec Brown's medal came out of 30 competitors, while Dylan Brown's came out of 27. Nearly the whole field was from California.
The Dilibero twins' bronze medals both came in their first ever competition in the under 14 youth division. Since the twins are 11, they had competed in under 12 in the past.
"We definitely felt the pressure of being in the higher category, with girls who had been fencing longer than we have," Andrea Dilibero said. "It was harder, and we had to work a lot harder."
Cassandra Dilibero said she was excited to win the medals at an out-of-state competition.
"It's more fun to travel for them," she said. "Winning bronze medals really gives us a lot of confidence."
Christopher Drexel can be reached at 990-8929 or [email protected].