updated 04/07/1980 AT 01:00 AM EST
•originally published 04/07/1980 AT 01:00 AM EST
Jana Angelakis has been sticking it to her opponents for nine years. At 18, she is one of the top female fencers in the country and an odds-on favorite for a berth on the U.S. Olympic squad—if there is one. "I'd be very disappointed," says Jana of the planned U.S. boycott of the Moscow Games, "but I would have to agree with the President." Cheerful, frizzy-haired Jana took up the sport at age 9, when her parents, a Peabody, Mass. police sergeant and his wife, spotted a newspaper ad for a fencing program sponsored by the town's recreation department. Within six months she had won a novice competition in Waterbury, Conn. Then Jana dropped fencing for a year—until her coach, Peabody fireman Joseph Pechinsky, convinced her to return. At 14, she won the under-20 Junior Olympic competition, and two years later made it to the national championship finals. Jana lost that time, but last June, in Colorado Springs, she became the youngest woman ever to win the title. Although training 20 hours a week in hopes of winning Olympic gold, she managed to graduate from high school with honors and will enroll at Penn State next fall. She has no steady beau, and her only diversion is working part-time in a men's clothing store. "I don't have much time for anything else now," says Jana. "If you're really dedicated, you put everything else second."