Hawkeyes To Open 2006-07 Season

Nov. 7, 2006


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Iowa will open the 2006-07 wrestling season Saturday at the Kaufman-Brand Open in Omaha, NE. Competition starts at 9 a.m. at Lee & Helene Sapp Fieldhouse on the University of Nebraska at Omaha campus. A total of 42 teams are expected and approximately 650 wrestlers will compete in the meet. It’s easily the country’s largest single-day collegiate meet. The tournament will be wrestled in two divisons – an open division and 20 & under division.

Junior Mark Perry will represent the Hawkeyes at the 41st annual NWCA All-Star Dual presented by the United States Marine Corps. The dual will be held Monday, November 20 at the Dallas Convention Center and Arena in Dallas, TX. Start time is scheduled for 7 p.m. Perry, who is ranked second in the country, will face top-ranked Johny Hendricks of Oklahoma State at 165 pounds. Hendricks is a two-time NCAA champion and three-time all-American for the Cowboys. Perry is 0-3 against him, losing a 7-5 decision in sudden victory at the 2004 Kaufman-Brand Open, a 3-1 decision in the 2005 Iowa-Oklahoma State dual and a 5-2 decision in the 2005 NCAA Championship finals. The two did not meet last season because Perry wrestled at 174 pounds.

First-year Head Coach Tom Brands and his staff, which includes former Iowa skipper Dan Gable and former Hawkeye wrestlers Wes Hand, Doug Schwab and Mike Zadick hope to guide the 2006-07 Hawkeyes back to the domination experienced in the 1980’s and 90’s.

Brands and the new staff will have ample bodies, and talent, to work with. The Hawkeyes return three all-Americans in senior Eric Luedke (174) and juniors Alex Tsirtsis (141) and Mark Perry (165), and an NCAA qualifier at six weights. The 2006-07 team has strong depth in the lower and middle weights.

A large group of newcomers will provide immediate depth. Joining Brands from Virginia Tech are transfers Joe Slaton (133), Dan LeClere (141), Brent Metcalf (149), T.H. Leet (165) and Jay Borschel (174). The five redshirted last season with the Hokies, and are currently appealing a Virginia Tech ruling that prevents them from being eligible this year. If the appeal is lost, all five will have to sit out the 2006-07 season and lose a year of eligibility. If the ruling is overturned, all five would be available to compete immediately. The group brings a combined total of 17 state titles, including four-timers Borschel, LeClere and Metcalf. Borschel (Marion), LeClere (Coggon) and Slaton (Cedar Rapids) are all eastern Iowa natives.

Iowa’s freshman class includes Matt Ballweg (149-Waverly, IA), Travis Blasco (141, Old Bridge, NJ), Aaron Janssen (157/165-Emmetsburg, IA), Jake Kerr (157-Oskaloosa, IA), Nick Kolegraff (157-Milford, IA), Brooks Kopsa (157-Gilman, IA), Billy Murphy (133-Hughson, CA) and Dane Wilson (197-Oakland, IA).

Radio – Steven Grace and four-time Hawkeye all-American Mark Ironside will call this season’s action live on AM-800, KXIC. All dual meets, not including the NWCA National Duals, will be broadcast live, as will action from the Big Ten and NCAA tournaments. Audio broadcasts from all of the season’s competition will be available online. To listen to the broadcast online, go to the wrestling schedule page on www.hawkeyesports.com. and click on the event. Broadcasts are available using the Hawkeye All-Access subscription, which can be purchased for $6.95 per month or $49.95 per year. The CSTV XXL Premium subscription is also available for $99.95 per year.

Television – Six of Iowa’s duals will be aired on television. The Iowa State (Dec. 3), Michigan State (Feb. 11) and Minnesota meets (Feb. 18) will be broadcast live on Iowa Public Television (IPTV), which is in its 31st year of televising college wrestling. Tim Johnson and Jim Gibbons will call the season’s action for IPTV. Iowa’s dual at Oklahoma State (Jan. 19) will be aired on ESPNU, the Hawkeyes’ dual at Penn State (Feb. 4) will be shown on FOX Sports Pittsburgh and Iowa’s dual against Ohio State (Feb. 16) will be aired on CSTV.

The Internet – Livestats are available for all Hawkeye home duals on the University of Iowa’s website, www.hawkeyesports.com. Go to the wrestling schedule page, select the event and click on the Livestats link.

Hawkeye senior Ty Eustice (149) and freshman Ryan Morningstar (157) were Iowa’s two individual champions at the 2005 Kaufman-Brand Open in Omaha, NE. Iowa sent 26 competitors to the tournament, which featured 650 wrestlers from 42 teams. Eustice scored a major decision and four decisions en route to his 149-pound open division title. Morningstar scored two pins, a technical fall and two decisions on his way to the 20-and-under title at 157.

Also placing for Iowa in the open division were sophomore Alex Tsirtsis (141-2nd), senior Joe Johnston (157-2nd), junior Eric Luedke (165-3rd), senior Cole Pape (165-4th) and sophomore Matt Fields (Hwt.-2nd). Placing for the Hawkeyes in the 20-and-under division were freshmen Thomas Magnani (125-5th), Daniel Dennis (133-5th) and Dan Erekson (197-3rd), and redshirt freshmen Jacob Neuzil (174-5th) and Michael Bucklin (Hwt.-6th).

Hawkeye seniors Joe Johnston (157) and Paul Bradley (184) competed at the 40th annual NWCA All-Star Classic in Stillwater, OK. Both wrestlers lost close matches. Johnston faced Illinois’ Alex Tirapelle in a rematch of the 2005 NCAA Championship quarterfinals. Johnston scored an escape in the second period, but Tirapelle tied the match at 1-1 with an escape of his own to start the third period. Tirapelle then scored a takedown with 1:15 left. Johnston escaped to make the score 3-2, but could not score in the final minute. Tirapelle received a point for riding time to win, 4-2.

Bradley lost to Illinois’ Pete Friedl, 4-3, in the first meeting between the two. Friedl scored a takedown in the first period and an escape in the second to take a 3-0 lead. Bradley scored an escape and a takedown late in the third period, but Friedl escaped with 30 seconds left for the 4-3 win.

The Hawkeyes held their annual wrestle-offs Nov. 2-4 in the Dan Gable Wrestling Complex in Iowa City. Hawkeye fans that packed the wrestling practice room were were treated to a glimpse of Iowa’s young and talented depth. Three of of seven weight class winners are seniors, while three are redshirt freshmen. Following are the results:

Thursday Results
149 – Brooks Kopsa dec. Matt Ballweg, 6-2

Friday Results
133 – Mario Galanakis maj. dec. Billy Murphy, 12-2
133 – Joe Slaton dec. Daniel Dennis, 8-6
141 – Dan LeClere maj. dec. Derek Coorough, 17-5
149 – Alex Grunder maj. dec. Brooks Kopsa, 15-6
149 – Travis Blasco maj. dec. Brett Stedman, 11-3
157 – Ryan Morningstar tech. fall Nick Kolegraff, 17-1 in 4:47
165 – Mark Perry maj. dec. Jake Kerr, 12-2
165 – Ben Stedman dec. T.H. Leet, 8-4

Saturday Results
133 – Mario Galanakis dec. Joe Slaton, 10-3
141 – Dan LeClere dec. Alex Tsirtsis, 4-3
149 – Alex Grunder dec. Travis Blasco, 11-6
157 – Ryan Morningstar maj. dec. Brad Medchill, 11-1
165 – Mark Perry maj. dec. Ben Stedman, 10-2
174 – Eric Luedke dec. Jay Borschel, 7-5 sv
184 – Phillip Keddy maj. dec. Rick Loera, 10-2

Press releases, meet results and audio broadcasts of dual meets can be found at www.hawkeyesports.com. Current staff and student-athlete head shots can be found at pics.hawkeyesports.com.

Iowa’s overall dual meet record is 795-209-30 (.783) in 94 seasons. The Hawkeyes have won 20 national titles, including nine of the last 16, and 31 Big Ten titles. Iowa’s 47 NCAA Champions have won a total of 73 NCAA individual titles, crowning six three-time and 13 two-time champions. The Hawkeyes’ 99 Big Ten Champions have won a total of 180 conference titles. There have been seven four-time, 18 three-time and 24 two-time Iowa winners. Iowa’s 129 all-Americans have earned all-America status 263 times, including 16 four-time, 27 three-time and 32 two-time honorees.

Season tickets and single meet tickets for Iowa’s eight home duals are on sale at the University of Iowa Athletic Ticket Office at 1-800-424-2957, 319-335-9327 or www.hawkeyesports.com. University of Iowa students will be admitted free of charge for all matches with a student ID. Following are the ticket prices:

Season Tickets
$56 – General Public, $49 – University Faculty & Staff

Single-Match Tickets Purchased in Advance
$8 – Adults, $4 Youth/Non-University of Iowa Students

Single-Match Tickets Purchased at the Door
$10 – Adults, $5 Youth/Non-University of Iowa Students

Carver-Hawkeye Arena has been the home of Iowa wrestling since 1983. The Hawkeyes are 150-15 (.909) in the arena, which includes a record 10 victories during the 1986 season. Iowa has recorded 16 undefeated seasons in the arena, with the most recent (8-0) occurring in 2002-03. The dual wrestling attendance record for Carver-Hawkeye Arena is 15,291, set when Iowa defeated Iowa State on February 22, 1992. The arena seats 15,500 for a dual wrestling meet.

Seniors Ben and Brett Stedman from Sioux City, IA, are the lone set of brothers on the 2006-07 Hawkeye roster. There have been 10 sets of brothers to wrestle together in the Hawkeye varsity lineup since the 1950s. They are Don and Tom Huff (1961), Mark and Scott Trizzino (1981), Lenny, Larry and Jim Zalesky (1981-82), Ed and Lou Banach (1981-83), Marty and Lindley Kistler (1984-85), Jim and John Heffernan (1987), Tom and Terry Brands (1989-92), Troy and Terry Steiner (1991-93), Ryan and Randy Fulsaas (2001) and Luke and Ty Eustice (2003-04).

The Stedman’s are also the fifth set of twins to wrestle at Iowa. Ed and Lou Banach, Tom and Terry Brands, Troy and Terry Steiner and Randy and Ryan Fulsaas are the other four.

The Hawkeye wrestling staff of Tom Brands, Dan Gable, Wes Hand, Doug Schwab and Mike Zadick earned a total of two Olympic gold medals, seven NCAA titles, 10 conference titles and 15 all-America honors. Their combined college career wrestling record is 605-84-2 (.877), including three undefeated seasons.

Former University of Iowa wrestlers Bill and Mike Zadick brought home shiny hardware from the 2006 World Championships in Guangzhou, China, in September. Bill won the gold medal at 145.5 pounds, winning five straight matches to become the first American since 1999 to win a World freestyle title. Mike earned the silver at 132 pounds in his first World Championships appearance.

The Zadicks are the first set of brothers to make a World Team since former Hawkeyes Tom and Terry Brands earned spots in 1993, 1994 and 1995. Tom is now Iowa’s head wrestling coach and Terry is the USA Wrestling freestyle resident coach. Both Brands have had hands in both Zadicks’ wrestling success.

Bill won the 1996 NCAA and Big Ten titles for the Hawkeyes. He was a two-time all-American who lettered for the Hawkeyes from 1993-96. He posted a career record of 87-13 with 16 pins, wrestling at 134 and 142 pounds. A two-time U.S. National Freestyle champion (2001, 2002), Zadick is in his sixth year on the national freestyle team. He won the 2001 and 2006 World Team Trials, placing second in 1999 and 2002. Zadick was also runner-up at the 2003 World Cup and the 2000 U.S. Olympic Team Trials. The 2001 Manitoba Open champion, Zadick placed seventh at the 2001 World Championships. He also served as a volunteer assistant coach at Iowa for two seasons (2003-04). A native of Great Falls, MT, Bill earned a B.A. in art from the University of Iowa in 1996.

Mike was a three-time all-American (2000-02) at Iowa, winning the 149-pound Big Ten title in 2002. He also placed second at 60 kg/132 pounds at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Team trials and U.S. Nationals, and second at the 2005 World Team Trials challenge tournament. The Great Falls, MT, native is in his first season as strength training coach for the Hawkeyes. He served as volunteer assistant coach at Iowa for two seasons (2005-06). Mike earned a bachelor’s degree in sports studies from Iowa in 2004.

ESPN recently announced that four of the six sessions of the 2007 NCAA Wrestling Championships will be aired on live television. The March 17 finals will air at 7 p.m. (CT) on ESPN, while session three, four and five will be shown on ESPNU. Session three will air March 16 at 10 a.m., session four will be shown March 16 at 6 p.m. and session five will air March 17 at 9 a.m.

The 2007 championships will be held March 15-17 at the Palace of Auburn Hills in Auburn Hills, MI. The University of Michigan and the Detroit Metro Sports Commission will serve as hosts.