Perry, Metcalf Named Most Valuable Wrestlers

May 5, 2008

IOWA CITY, IA – Iowa wrestling’s NCAA Champions – senior Mark Perry and sophomore Brent Metcalf – have been named the Mike Howard Most Valuable Wrestlers for the 2007-08 season. They received the award at the team’s annual awards banquet Sunday in Iowa City.

The Hawkeyes had much to celebrate at the team banquet. The team won its 21st NCAA title and 32nd Big Ten title, which were firsts for second-year Head Coach Tom Brands. Iowa crowned two individual NCAA champions – a first since 1999 – and seven all-Americans – the highest number since 2001. The Hawkeyes posted a 21-1 overall record, ending the season on a 14-match winning streak. Iowa also won the Big Ten regular season title with an unblemished 8-0 mark. Brands was named NWCA and Big Ten Coach of the Year.

Perry won his second national title to become Iowa’s 14th two-time NCAA champion. He also captured his fourth all-America honor, becoming the 17th Hawkeye to accomplish the feat in school history. Perry scored 25 team points at the NCAA Championships, the most of any wrestler in the tournament. Despite missing the entire Big Ten dual season due to injury, the Stillwater, OK, native posted a 20-3 season record and led the team in pins (12) and fastest pin (21 seconds). The 165-pounder was named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week Dec. 19 and Wrestler of the Week Mar. 25. Perry ends his Hawkeye career with a 96-16 record.

Metcalf stormed through the competition in his first season at 149 pounds with the Hawkeyes, winning his first NCAA and Big Ten titles. He earned the prestigious Dan Hodge Trophy, which is annually presented to the nation’s top collegiate wrestler. The Davison, MI, native was named Outstanding Wrestler at both the NCAA and Big Ten Championships, and the Division I NWCA/Cliff Keen National Duals. He also garnered Big Ten Wrestler of the Year honors, becoming only the fourth Hawkeye to earn both in the same season. Metcalf led all point-scorers at the Big Ten tournament with 24, and his 23 points at NCAAs tied for third among all competitors. He posted a 35-1 season record, ending the year on a 32-match winning streak. He was named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week twice, becoming the first student-athlete in conference history to earn in the honor in consecutive weeks. He was also named Wrestler of the Week twice. Metcalf, who also earned academic all-Big Ten honors, led the team in collegiate wins (35), collegiate winning percentage (.972), dual wins (21), dual winning percentage (.954), dual team points scored (100) and technical falls (6).

Senior heavyweight Matt Fields took home three team awards. He earned the the J. Donald McPike, Sr., Award, which is given annually to the senior with the highest grade-point average, the Most Improved Award and shared the All-American Award with four other teammates. A health and sports studies major from Lowden, IA, Fields earned his first all-America honor this season. He posted a 32-8 record and earned academic all-Big Ten accolades. Fields ends his Iowa career with a 95-38 mark, starting 64 duals.

Fields shared the All-American Award with junior Charlie Falck, and sophomores Jay Borschel, Phillip Keddy and Joe Slaton. Falck earned his second all-America honor at 125, placing sixth at the NCAA Championships and fourth at the Big Ten tournament. His season record of 31-7 included a 21-1 dual mark. A native of Strawberry Point, IA, Falck shared the team lead in dual wins (21) and dual winning percentage (.954) with Metcalf. Keddy, from Vernal, UT, earned his first all-America honor at 184 in his second season in the lineup. His 28-11 record included a third-place finish at the Big Ten Championships and a sixth-place finish at NCAAs. Borschel and Slaton each picked up their first all-America honor in their first season with the Hawkeyes. Slaton placed second at the NCAA Championships and third at Big Tens at 133, posting a 31-5 season record. The Cedar Rapids, IA, native was also named Wrestler of the Week by the Big Ten and after Iowa’s win at Iowa State in December. Borschel placed third at both tournaments at 174 with a 32-5 record. The academic all-Big Ten honoree from Marion, IA, led the team in major decisions (11) and ranked second in collegiate wins (32) and dual team points scored (79).

Sophomore Chad Beatty was honored with the Mike McGivern Award, which is annually presented to the team’s most courageous wrestler. The Wilton, IA, native moved up two weight classes to compete at 197 pounds after the season started. His season record of 13-15 included key dual wins against Indiana and Michigan late in the season to help the Hawkeyes earn the conference regular season title. Beatty was named Big Ten Wrestler of the Week Feb. 20 for his efforts in those matches.

Sophomore Illinois natives Rick Loera and Daniel Dennis earned the team’s Coaches Appreciation Award. Loera, who also moved up to compete at 197 pounds, posted a 7-9 record. Dennis was injured at the start of the season, but came back at 133. Loera is from Park Ridge, and Dennis is a native of Ingleside.

2007-08 University of Iowa Wrestling Team Awards
Mike Howard Award (Most Valuable): Mark Perry, Brent Metcalf
Mike McGivern Award (Most Courageous): Chad Beatty
J. Donald McPike, Sr. Award (Highest GPA for graduating senior): Matt Fields
All-America Award: Jay Borschel, Phillip Keddy, Charlie Falck, Matt Fields, Joe Slaton
Most Pins Award: Mark Perry (12)
Most Improved Award: Matt Fields
Coaches Appreciation Award: Rick Loera, Daniel Dennis