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​2012 UPMC Sports Medicine Comeback Player of the YearA photo of Jake Wisener, the 2012 UPMC Sports Medicine Comeback Player of the Year

As a four-year member of the varsity wrestling team at Ringgold High School, Jake Wisener was Section 12 champion in 2012. He finished with 111 total victories and a 5th place PIAA tournament showing.

But to get where he is today, Jake had to face many challenges.

Battling Through Adversity

In February 2010, during the end of Jake’s sophomore wrestling season, he was diagnosed with Morel-Lavallée syndrome (a serious soft tissue condition).

When draining of his knee proved unsuccessful, he saw UPMC's James Russavage, MD. who repaired the buildup in Jake's knee in June 2010.

Jake returned to the ring for his junior season, compiling an impressive 24-3 record. But in January 2011, he woke up with a high fever and swollen knee.

Jake went to the emergency room for treatment. Doctors diagnosed him with a septic knee joint, requiring immediate surgery.

Dr. Russavage and Peter Siska, MD, successfully performed the surgery and sent Jake home with a peripherally inserted central catheter line and a six-week course of antibiotics.

He also went to physical therapy at the UPMC Centers for Rehab Services, where he regained his strength and range of motion.

Overcoming Another Setback

Through his internal drive and self-motivation, Jake returned to the weight room and wrestling mat in full force.

But after regaining his weight and strength, he suffered a minor setback early in the 2012 season, sustaining patella subluxation in the a right knee. Dr. Siska once again treated Jake and he resumed wrestling, going on to complete his highly successful season.

Jake’s motivation, persistence, and positive attitude have helped him battle through adversity and get back in the game. He received a full wrestling scholarship to Lock Haven University, where he's currently a freshman.

Learn more about common knee injuries and treatments.

About the Comeback Player of the Year Award

The Comeback Player of the Year Award is given annually by UPMC Sports Medicine to a high school athlete who successfully returns to their sport after injury and exemplifies:

  • Courage
  • Determination
  • A positive attitude in the face of adversity

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