Photo of Eli Sukunda

Eli Sukunda

Head Coach

Eli has been coaching the Carleton University Ravens fencing team since 1993. Entering his 22nd year as head coach of the team, Sukunda’s success as a fencer has helped to establish a reputable program at Carleton University.

 

Sukunda is a three -time Olympian fencer who competed in Montreal, Los Angeles and Seoul. He was a gold and bronze medalist in Sabre at the Commonwealth Games in 1982 and a bronze medalist at the 1983 Pan American Games.

 

He has coached the National Fencing Team at three World Championships including the Men’s Sabre team in 1993 and the Women’s Sabre team in 1998 and 1999.

 

In 2009-2010, he led the men’s and women’s fencing teams to gold in front of the home crowd. It marked the second OUA title in the history of the Ravens women’s program and the men’s first championship since 2000-2001. It was also the first time both the men’s and women’s teams have captured gold in the same year. For leading the Ravens fencing team to one of its most successful seasons, Sukunda was named the 2010 Carleton University Coach of the Year.

 

Most recently, Sukunda has lead the women’s team to win two OUA Championships consecutively, 2011-12 and 2012-2013.

 

Photo of Kyle Girard

Kyle Girard

Assistant Coach

Kyle is a former Men’s Sabre National Champion and member of the national team who competed internationally for over 10 years. He is also a community level-1 certified coach with over 12 years’ experience at the varsity and national levels.

 

Kyle has a passion for coaching that lead him to take it up before he retired from his own competitive career. As a National Champion and member of the national team, he knows what it takes to succeed at the highest levels. He’s helped hundreds of beginners discover a love for fencing and has guided many from their first lunges to top 16 national level finishes.

 

The best coaching strategy is one that takes the student into account. Kyle works with each of his students to take advantage of their individual strengths and improve on their weaknesses. Favouring a blend of Hungarian and French styles, Kyle emphasises the importance of fundamentals, without making lessons tedious exercises in rote learning. The end result is a balance of finesse and power on the physical side, with a clever and adaptive approach on the strategic side.

 

Photo of Wesley Ross

Wesley Ross

Assistant Coach

Wesley is one of the greatest fencers, if not athletes, of all time. And totally not the guy who wrote these bios.

 

A former member of the High Performance Program, he has eight years’ experience competing at the international and national levels. A true product of the Carleton University fencing program, he started his career in the Beginner’s Program in his second year of university and worked his way up to become a varsity, provincial and regional champion.

 

Wesley works with new fencers to help guide them from initial interest through to an effective practice schedule and finally onto a competition footing. His coaching philosophy is rooted in helping a student understand why an action is important, giving the student agency in their own development. Lastly, he is a firm believer in an understanding attitude off the strip, with no quarter given on it. When you step on the field of play, every touch is earned.