Now recovered from injury, Canon-McMillan's Chishko chasing 3rd WPIAL title
Solomon Chishko wasn't able to help Canon-McMillan win the WPIAL and PIAA Class AAA team titles.
An elbow injury he suffered at the Super 32 tournament in October forced him to get surgery and prevented him from competing until last week.
Now the two-time WPIAL champion is ready to go after his third title this weekend at the WPIAL/PIAA Class AAA Southwest Regional at Norwin. The junior 145-pounder also wants to win his first state title next weekend in Hershey.
Chishko (4-0) opened the WPIAL tournament Thursday with a 20-5 technical fall win over Hempfield's Jesse Giallonardo.
Even though Chishko competed only in the Section 4 tournament last week, he still was seeded No. 1 by the WPIAL wrestling committee.
“I'm excited to be back especially waiting all year to wrestle,” Chishko said. “With the team stuff, I was worried we wouldn't win without me in the lineup, but my teammates pulled through. It worked out pretty well.”
Chishko, who is wrestling with a plate and five screws in his right elbow, said he learned a lot while sitting out. He did what he could to stay in shape until he was cleared to wrestle — a call that came a week before the section tournament.
“I probably was asked ‘When you are you coming back?' about 50 times,” Chishko said. “It made me anxious to get back.
“When I got my cast off, I was doing stuff with my legs. I ran and did some hard drilling the last two or three weeks.”
There even was a time when doctors told him he was done for the season.
“I was excited when they told me I was cleared,” Chishko said. “I'm fresh, and it's like I'm starting the season new. I definitely will be tested this weekend. I feel confident in myself.”
In his four bouts this season, Chishko has two pins, a technical fall and a major decision.
“Solomon is so gifted, and he's mat ready,” coach Chris Mary said. “He looks great, and his conditioning is improving. He's very hungry after missing the team fun stuff.”
He'll face Connellsville senior Tyler Steele in the quarterfinals, scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. Friday.
Hempfield sophomore Sammy Krivus also is in search of his first PIAA title. Krivus, who is seeking his second WPIAL title, beat Albert Gallatin's Will Valentine, 17-2, on Thursday.
“I looked for a pin, but I really wanted to work on some things,” Krivus said. “I worked on the Turk and some tilts. I wanted to get a good sweat going and get the bad stuff out.”
Greensburg Salem junior Anthony Cable survived a scare at 195. He trailed Hopewell's Michael Tempalski, 5-2, heading into the third period but rallied for a 7-6 victory.
“I don't know what happened to me,” Cable said. “I was so sluggish that it took me into the third period to get going. I'm just happy I moved on.”
The top four seeds in each weight class advanced except Hempfield's Sean LaVella, the third seed at 138 pounds. LaVella and Cole Lambie (106) were pulled out of the tournament for breaking team rules, Hempfield coach Vince DeAugustine said.
Another first-day highlight was Peters Township's Tyler Buckiso (126 pounds) earning his 100th career victory with a 6-2 win over Latrobe's Ethan Stas.
Paul Schofield is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com.