MAPLEWOOD, NJ — Marissa Viqueira, a senior at Columbia High School, has been fencing for nine years. A foil fencer, she trains at the Fencers Club in New York City with Alex Martin and Sean McClain, and has excelled on the CHS varsity girls’ fencing team for the past four years.
In her first two years on the CHS team, Viqueira won the freshman and sophomore tournaments. During her first three years on the team, she was named district individual champion and in this school year she came in second place. She was named to the Third All-State team as a freshman, Second All-State team as a sophomore and First All-State team as a junior — proving that she just keeps getting better and better with no signs of stopping. As a junior, Viqueira was named second in state individuals.
Viqueira has helped take the CHS foil squad to victories throughout her four years, with the squad taking first place in the state squad championships in her freshman and sophomore years, and second place in her junior and senior years. And the girls’ team as a whole won the state championship during Viqueira’s freshman and sophomore years, and came in second in her junior and senior years.
How did you get involved in fencing?
“I got into fencing when my older sister, Rachel, started at New Jersey Fencing Alliance. I thought the fencing gear was cool so I began when I was 7 years old.”
What is your favorite movie?
“My favorite movie is ‘Inception’ because it’s a movie you have to follow through to understand. It’s thought provoking.”
What is your best fencing memory?
“My best fencing memory is last year when I was having a pretty hard season and failing to get a result at every national competition. But then at the Junior Olympics, the last competition of the season, I was tied for third in my last cadet competition and came top 8 in the junior competition.”
How do you get pumped up before a competition?
“To prepare for competition I imagine myself fencing the best I can and think about the work I’ve put in to compete and that makes me confident for the competition.”
Is there anything about you that people might be surprised to learn?
“I have three older sisters who all fence. We all do foil except for one who does sabre.”
How do you spend your free time?
“I spend my free time with my boyfriend or my friends. I don’t have a lot of free time because of practice, so whatever time I get, I spend it with them.”
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
“Athens, Greece. I see how beautiful it is and my friend just went there so it’s always been the next place I want to travel to.”
What are six things that you can’t live without?
“Friends; family; my dog, Kaiser; laptop; fencing, and music.”