Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Transfer Boosts Canon-Mcmillan Fortunes on Mat Wiercioch Leaves Charleroi for Big Macs

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Transfer Boosts Canon-Mcmillan Fortunes on Mat Wiercioch Leaves Charleroi for Big Macs

Article excerpt

Charleroi's loss is Canon-McMillan's gain.

The most successful wrestler in Charleroi Area High School history, Cody Wiercioch, is now wrestling for the best team in the state.

"I received word over the summer from my athletic director that the Wiercioch family had moved to Cecil and their three children had enrolled at Canon-McMillan," Canon-McMillan coach Chris Mary said. "I understand Cody's family had been looking at homes in this area and in the Chartiers-Houston School District for the past few years."

Wiercioch was a two-time PIAA finalist for the Cougars. He won a PIAA Class AA title at 152 pounds, then placed second last year at 160. He's also a two-time WPIAL and Southwest Region finalist, and one-time champ in both. Wiercioch enters his junior year with a 77- 4 career record.

"Cody's mom works in Upper St. Clair, so her drive to work is now 5 miles instead of a long drive from Charleroi," Mary said.

By moving to Class AAA, Wiercioch's chances of winning another PIAA title have diminished a bit, as he will most likely compete in the same weight class as Chance Marstaller and Jason Luster.

Marstaller, a sophomore from Kennard-Dale, won the PIAA Class AAA title at 152 last year and is considered the best high school wrestler in the state. Luster, a senior at Central Catholic, placed second in the state at 160. Luster also won a National Prep School title as a sophomore at Kiski Prep.

"Cody certainly makes us a better team, but his road to another state title would have been much easier if he stayed in Class AA," Mary said.

Canon-McMillan has won two consecutive WPIAL Class AAA Team Tournament titles and claimed the PIAA team championship at the individual tournament last year.

The Big Macs had only one starter graduate. Coincidentally, Wiercioch fits right into Canon-McMillan's lineup.

"We've had a bull's-eye on our chest the last couple years," Mary said. "We're taking the same approach we've taken in the past. We're going to work hard every day to stay in shape.

"A key to our success the past couple years has been staying healthy. We should have a very good team if we keep working hard and stay away from injuries. …

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