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Sylvie Binder
Binder Wins the Gold - Photo Credit: Devin Manky Photography
Armonk’s First World Gold Medal Winner

Updated April 4, 2016
Congratulations to 17 year old Armonk native Sylvie Binder, who won the Women’s Cadet Championship Fencing Title in Bourges, France on April 1.

Binder is a member of the elite United States women’s team of three cadets and four junior fencers.

This year, Binder came for the gold. In a competitive semi-final match against Italy’s Lara Bertola, she won 15-13. Binder’s determination, focus and clear vision put her on top.

In the final championship match against Japan’s Sera Azuma, Binder won 15-12. With her fine-tuned skills, Binder was able to dig deep and land the points when she needed them.

Last year, Binder won the bronze medal for third place in Bourges. This season she arrived in France ranked as Number 2 in the Cadet Division, and Number 4 in the Junior Division. She comes home a champion!

Watch Binder’s two championship matches @ 1:11:30 - 1:33:50 and @ 2:12:35 - 2:29:49:

At the 2016 World Cadet Fencing Championship in Bourges, on Monday, Sylvie Binder and the USA team won gold in the mixed team competition over Russia 60-57. This is Binder's second gold medal. 

Watch the U.S. mixed cadet team compete for the gold against Russia here: Binder fences in the last match @ 1:58:00 - 2:14:57.

Slyvie Binder
Armonk’s Young and Talented Fencer Reaches Out for Assistance

February 10, 2016
Armonk’s Sylvie Binder (age 16) has earned herself another trip to the World Fencing Championships. In April 2016, Binder will compete in both the individual and team competitions as part of the 10-day long fencing festival of the World Cadet and Junior Fencing Championship in Bourges, France.

In Bourges, she will join an elite team of three women cadet fencers and four juniors who will represent the United States at the world championship. Last year, Binder fenced in the cadet competition where she earned bronze medal in third place. This season, she ranked number 1 fencer in the cadet category and number 4 in the junior category.

In an effort to support her training and to facilitate her coaching team and family’s travel to this prestigious event, Binder has launched a fundraising drive on Last year, she raised over $4,000. This year she hopes to exceed that amount by raising $7500. Her RallyMe campaign can be viewed online at the sports fundraising website:

She has pledged to donate 10% of the proceeds to the United Nations Human Rights office because she says she is passionate about the fair and humane treatment of all people around the world.

Binder is a junior at Byram Hills High School. She has been fencing since was 7 years old at the Fencing Academy of Westchester.

Please help in her quest for the gold as she heads to the world championship.

Sylvie Binder
Armonk’s Sylvie Binder Wins Fencing Gold Medal

October 23, 2015
In what marks a personal best and a highlight for her club, the Fencing Academy of Westchester in Hawthorne, NY, Sylvie Binder finished the United State’s Fencing Association’s North American Club, Division I women’s foil competition with a gold medal.

Binder finished first out of field of 166 fencers in U.S.A.’s and Canada’s most competitive category. Division I includes both aspiring, current and former Olympians from both countries as well as many NCAA Division I fencers.
The path to gold at the national competition was extremely challenging. Along the way, Binder beat both reigning World Junior Champion, Sara Taffel of Columbia University and Notre Dame’s Sabrina Massialis. Sabrina is the reigning gold medalist from the 2015 Youth Olympic Games in Nanjiing, China.
Binder’s win solidifies her current national ranking as the top women’s cadet fencer (16 and under). She has advanced her national standings in both the Junior (19 and under) and Senior levels to No. 5 and No. 13, respectively.
At this level of competition, Binder’s gold medal also broke new ground for the Fencing Academy of Westchester (FAW) and her coaches Slava Grigoriev and Anya Katkova. Never before has a woman foilist from FAW won gold at a Division I national competition. Binder joins a relatively small and elite group of national fencers who have reached this milestone.
Sylvie Binder has been training and competing since she was seven. In addition to this month’s Division I gold medal, she is the current Cadet World Bronze medalist and is ranked No. 3 among all the European Cadet fencers in her weapon.
Of her gold medal performance, Binder said, “What I am most thrilled about is helping to bring home the gold for my club and coaches – through the ups and downs of fencing, they have always believed in my abilities and have been a source of strength. I hope we can keep the momentum going!”

Tashkent 2015
American Fencer Sylvie Binder Takes Home the Bronze

April 3, 2015
U.S. Fencing Association reported Armonk’s fifteen-year-old Sylvie Binder went 15-14 OT over Marta Martyanova, the reigning 2014 Russian Cadet World Champion.

At the Cadet Women's Foil World Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan on Friday April 3, Binder proudly stood on the podium to take home the bronze at her first Worlds. She earned the spot to represent the U.S. as the third-highest ranking foil fencer in her age category of 17 and under.

Binder’s semifinal match also went down to the wire when she lost to Serena Rossini (ITA), 15-14.

Armonk's Sylvie Binder has Earned a Spot on the USA’s World Cadet Fencing Team

March 4, 2015
The fifteen-year-old will compete at the Cadet World Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan on April 3, 2015. Binder earned her spot to represent the U.S. by finishing the 2014-2015 season as the third-highest ranking foil fencer in her age category (17 and under). 

She will join two other female fencers, Morgan Partridge (17) of Swansee, Mass. and Stefani Deschner of Mechanicsville, VA at the competition that will attract hundreds of athletes from all over the world such as Hungary, Germany, Italy, Russia, Brazil, and France.

Binder has had a stand-out season both domestically and internationally with a high note coming last October wherein she won the gold medal at one of Europe’s most competitive Cadet international fencing tournaments – the Sparkassen Cup held in Tauberbischofsheim, Germany. Binder bested over 180 fencers from around Europe and the USA to win the gold after a two-day double elimination competition. Her win in Germany along with a bronze medal in another event in Gyor, Hungary contributed to her strong ranking this season.

Upon being named to the US fencing squad, Binder said: “To now compete against the best fencers in the whole world is a dream come true – and I am going to give it everything I have to become recognized worldwide!”

For the next month, Binder will be training with her coaches from the Fencing Academy of Westchester – Anya Katkova and Slava Grigoriev. She is also trying to raise funds through an internet crowd sourcing campaign to help pay for her coaches and family to travel to Uzbekistan. As part of that campaign, she has pledged to donate 10% of all funds raised to the UN Human Rights office. She chose that organization because of the region’s weak record on human rights. See:

Binder Brings Home the Gold

December 3, 2014
Armonk's Sylvie Binder (15) won the gold medal at the Tauberbischofsheim Cadet European Fencing Cup in Germany on Sunday November 30. Binder lead the USA's sweep of the top three spots with her teammates Morgan Partridge (Swansea, Mass.) and Stefani Deschner (Mechanicsville, Va.) coming in second and third respectively.

The Tauberbischofsheim Cadet European Cup attracted over 200 fencers from Europe and Asia in addition to a delegation of 20 top fencers from the United States. The event is known as a challenging test of fencing because the competition is held over two grueling days with multiple rounds of elimination. In addition, fencing is popular in Germany, a country that has historically produced multiple Olympic fencing champions.

This is Binder's second medal won in the international season - in October she earned a bronze medal in the Gyor Cup in Hungary. As a result of this win, Binder has now climbed to No. 2 in the USA National Point Standings for the Cadet level (16 and under) behind Partridge and ahead of Deschner. At the end of the season in February, the top three ranked fencers will represent the United States at the World Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan in April.

Binder trains at the Fencing Academy of Westchester under the coaching of Anya Katkova and Slava Grigoriev. She began fencing at the age of 7.

Armonk sibling fencers win big in fencing tournament
Armonk’s Binder Siblings Win Big at Fencing Tournament

June 4, 2014
Each year the Fencing Academy of South Jersey hosts a major fencing tournament as a warm-up event for the Summer Nationals that begin later this month. Known as the Mr. Ma Cup (named after the coach of the University of Pennsylvania fencing team – Andy Ma)

attracted over 500 competitors from around the USA to Burlington, NJ where they competed in youth and senior fencing events. The competitions were held from May 31 through June 1.

Sylvie Binder (14) bested a field of 51 women foilists from as far away as Los Angeles, CA to win the championship. In her category, competitors included many college-aged and post-college fencers, many with international experience, looking to tune up their game before competing at the 2014 Summer National Championship to be held in Columbus, Ohio beginning on June 22, 2014. Binder is currently ranked number three in the USA in the Y14 category and number 10 in the cadets (ages 16 and under).

In addition to the Mr. Ma Cup title, Binder is the 2014 winner of the New Jersey Cup for women’s open foil – a year-long series of open tournaments where the end-of-the year winner receives $250 toward her expenses to the Summer Nationals along with an engraved award.

Binder trains at the Fencing Academy of Westchester under the coaching of Anya Katkova and Slava Grigoriev – a two-time Olympic fencer from Khazakstan.

Zachary Binder (11) took home the silver medal in the Y12 competition which attracted 44 fencers from across the nation. Zachary Binder currently holds the third place ranking in the USA in the Y10 category and will also fence for the national championships in Columbus, Ohio like.

Zachary Binder lost to Maplewood, NJ’s Jack Woods in the gold medal bout. Woods is currently ranked number one in the USA in Y12 foil.

Zachary Binder has been fencing for over five years and trains with Slava Grigoriev at the Fencing Academy of Westchester

Fencing Academy of Westchester
Fencing Academy of Westchester Women Foil Fencers Excel at 2014 JR Olympics in Portland, Oregon

February 19, 2014
The 2014 United States Junior Olympic Fencing Championships were held in Portland, Oregon from February 14 to February 18. The competition includes events for men and women in two age categories:

Juniors – ages 19 and under and Cadet – ages 17 and under. Individual and team events were held in each of three traditional fencing weapons including foil, epee, and saber.

While more than 1500 fencers from around the country made the trip to Oregon, it was the women fencers from the Fencing Academy of Westchester in Hawthorne, NY, who excelled in their weapon of choice – the foil.  Liana Semel (16) from Carmel, NY earned a silver medal in the Junior women’s foil event, besting over 127 other competitors. Teammate Gaby Zusin (17) of Norwood, NJ also medaled with a 7th place finish.

Teams from Fencing Academy of Westchester (FAW) also picked up gold and bronze medals in the Junior women’s foil team events. The gold medal team included Semel, Sylvie Binder (14) from Armonk, Zusin, and Olympia Peters (14) from Tenafly, NJ. They were coached by two-time Olympian, Slava Grigoriev and Anya Katkova and defeated a tough team from San Francisco, California in the gold medal bout. The FAW bronze medal team included Finnula Mageras (16) from Darien, Ct., Emily Jiang (17) from Ardlsey, NY, and Joanne Carminucci (16) from Brewster, NY.

In the individual Cadet women’s foil event, Mageras and Binder both earned medals finishing 6th and 7th place respectively as well as earning their “A” ratings which signifies the highest level of skill a competitive fencer can achieve based on their tournament finishes.

The women’s team gold medal marks the first time since the Fencing Academy of Westchester was founded that a female team has captured the gold. “I am very proud of our women – they have worked incredibly hard by putting in the hours of training and coming together as a unit when it mattered. They are great role models for all the kids coming up in our programs,“ said Coach Katkova.

Hickory and Tweed
Access Physical Therapy Armonk