By Andrew Huynh

Well versed in French, academically talented, and a world-class fencer — junior Michael Wang is definitely a catch.

All while juggling five AP classes alongside taking French 3, he also used to tutor children of all ages at Cureton Elementary School.

Although having only fenced competitively for two years, he once managed to become one of the top 20 fencers in the nation for his age group and even placed in the top 16 for summer nationals.

“I started recreational fencing five years ago,” says Michael.

He left his original recreational fencing club to follow a friend without knowing the new club was competitive.

“I had no intent to do it competitively, but as time went on, the good fencers and my friends kept leaving the recreational club,” explains Michael.

He was originally a swimmer, but decided to pick up fencing upon realizing how much he “really hated [swimming].” He was reportedly bad at swimming and drowned a lot.

“A third of my body weight was probably water because I drank so much while swimming,” jokes Michael. “I asked my mom to switch sports, and she said I could fence.”

He has also traveled abroad to represent the United States in world class competitions.

“I went to Austria at end of October for a big competition,” states Michael. “I fenced against a very skilled Swiss kid and lost, but I did very well in pools.”

Although his mom forces him to continue the sport, he does actually enjoy it all the same.

“It’s a really satisfying sport because it’s fun to analyze and exploit my opponent’s habits,” he explains.

Top ranks and serious skills are not the only thing he’s gained from fencing. Michael has been able to meet many people from his various expeditions as a fencer.

“I made a lot of friends too,” says Michael. “I met an Austrian kid who knew about Harambe.”

He continues to fence and strives to become the best player he could possibly be each day.

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