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London Update: July 30

Jul 30, 2012, 4:36 PM EDT

Across the pond, the Games of the XXX Olympiad are well underway and several former, current and future Irish athletes have been busy on the court, pitch and piste (that’s the fencing mat, by the way).

Though the Opening Ceremony was not until Friday, the games actually began last Wednesday, with soccer, where three Notre Dame alumnae are representing their countries. You can read more about Team U.S.A.’s Shannon Boxx (’99) and Canada’s Melissa Tancredi (’04) and Candace Chapman (’05), in the latest entry on our soccer blog, Irish United.

On the hardwood, junior Natalie Achonwa and Canada fell in their opening game against Russia, 58-53. Achonwa scored three points and grabbed four rebounds in 22 minutes.

The Canadians resumed group play this afternoon against host country Great Britain, where Achonwa came up with several big plays down the stretch, including a late assist and putback score. She finished with four points, four rebounds and three assists in a 73-65 victory.

In fencing, incoming freshman Lee Kiefer reached the individual foil quarterfinals on Saturday, before losing to Italy’s Arianna Errigo, who went on to win the silver medal.

While Kiefer fell short in the individual competition, her effort (and her fencing mask) generated a lot of buzz on Twitter. She still has much to look forward to, both in her fencing career and at the London Games. The team foil competition will be held on Aug. 2.

This morning, senior epee Courtney Hurley lost to France’s Laura Flessel-Colovic in the round of 32. The San Antonio, Tex. native will have another shot on the piste during the team competition on Aug. 4.

Mariel Zagunis, who carried the U.S. flag at the Opening Ceremony, will go for her third straight gold medal in the individual sabre competition on Wednesday, Aug. 1.

We’ll have more in the coming days on the Irish in London. Be sure to keep up with the schedule of events at and follow @FightingIrish for more updates on Twitter.

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