East Rockaway Junior-Senior High School student Andrew Machovec began fencing at age 10 after discovering the sport in a class at the Freeport Recreation Center.
Over the years, he has honed his skills and competed nationally and internationally, earning many accolades. On Nov. 8, all that experience culminated in Machovec signing a national letter of intent to fence at Notre Dame.
“There are no words to describe how I feel about being offered a scholarship to study and fence at Notre Dame,” Machovec said. “The opportunities that it will afford me are the direct result of all of the hard work and dedication to my sport.”
Machovec said he decided he wanted to become a competitive fencer after just two sessions at the recreation center. Soon after, he joined the 5T Fencing Club in Mineola, where he met his coach, Gidon Retzkin. Machovec said Retzkin has been his mentor, and after training six days a week, he began entering competitions on the local levels, and eventually throughout the U.S. and abroad.
Last year, Machovec earned the No. 1 ranking in Cadet Mens Foil in the U.S. and Europe. He also won three World Cup gold medals and the junior Olympic championship, earning him a spot on the U.S. National Team, and represented his country at the world championships in Bulgaria.
In addition to fencing, Machovec said, he plans to study biology at Notre Dame. He will be joining a fencing team that won the NCAA championship last season.
“I am excited to discover how I may develop further as an athlete while training in Notre Dame’s amazing facilities alongside their acclaimed coaching staff,” Machovec said. “I am determined to contribute to the team’s continued success.”