Press Enterprise Writer

MOUNT CARMEL — Hidden within the star-studded, state-known wrestling powerhouse that is District 4 are a few wrestlers who are about to make some noise.

Among these under-the-radar performers is Shane Weidner.

After compiling a respectable record of 37-27 through his first two seasons, the Mount Carmel junior is 25-6 this year with a solid chance to claim his first district medal.

Weidner, now a 182-pounder, picked up two falls in a combined 46 seconds to reach the South Sectional final last Saturday. There he dropped an 11-4 decision to state-ranked Tyler Waltman of Southern Columbia in a match that felt a lot closer than the final score.

Bumping up

After struggling his first few matches at 170 pounds, his weight through the first seven weeks of the season, it wasn’t until a quad-meet at Central Columbia in late January that Weidner bumped up.

Weidner opened eyes at his 182 debut, going 3-0 with three falls in the quad-meet.

“Shane has the talent. He’s an excellent football player,” Mount Carmel coach Steve Pisarchik said of the three-sport athlete. “Anything you ask him to do, he can do it. You just have to channel his focus on wrestling at the time. And that’s what we did. He took a couple losses early (in the season), but after that we focused and regrouped, and it’s showing.”

Three-sport athlete

Since making the recent weight adjustment, Weidner is 5-2 with all five wins coming by fall. Three of those falls took less than 50 seconds.

“He’s the one that wanted to move to 182, and it’s working out,” Pisarchik said. “Instead of having to lose some weight, he wanted to lift and get stronger as the postseason goes on.”

In addition to wrestling, Weidner runs track and is a two-way starter in football. The Tornadoes’ wide receiver/cornerback had 1,250 yards of total offense for the District 4 2A runners-up this past season.

“It’s really nice running track because you’re in shape for football,” Weidner said. “During football, you’re lifting and running more, so it keeps you going all year-round.”

A role model

According to Pisarchik, Weidner is also a strong leader on the Red Tornadoes squad.

“It’s huge,” Pisarchik said of Weidner’s leadership role. “I tell him that all the time in the (wrestling) room. ‘Listen, whatever you’re doing, they’re seeing it. If you’re screwing off, they’re going to screw off.’ It’s channeling his focus hard, we just have to do everything the right way because the younger guys see it.”

Weidner credits his team’s intense practice regimen for its impressive 15-8 record in duals this season.

“We run a lot at practice,” Weidner said. “We drill a lot to practice the small things, but we train a lot to be in shape and be the better guy come the third period.”

‘Working harder’

The district qualifier knows he’s well into the second half of his high school career, and he wants to make the most of it.

“Coming into my final two years here, I’m trying to make the most of them,” Weidner said. “I’m putting in more work and working harder, and hoping for a better outcome than the last few years.”

Weidner earned a first-round bye as the 4-seed this coming weekend, and is scheduled to face the winner of a match between Montoursville’s Gavin Livermore and Canton’s Carter Route in the quarterfinals in Williamsport Friday night.

Marc Malkoskie covers sports for the Press Enterprise. He may be reached at 570-387-1234, ext. 1338, or by email at Follow him on Twitter at @mmalkoskie.