Tour Named MVP at Annual Awards Banquet

April 22, 2010

IOWA CITY, IA – More than 100 former University of Iowa swimmers competed with the 2009-10 Hawkeyes during the annual Alumni Meet at the Field House Pool last Saturday. The final event at the historic pool was part of a celebratory weekend for Iowa swimming and diving that included the team’s awards banquet Saturday night. Over 400 swimmers, divers, alumni, parents and supporters recognized the 2009-10 team at the Coralville Marriot. Nearly 300 people kicked off the weekend’s festivities at Friday night’s alumni social, held in Kinnick Stadium’s Paul W. Brechler Press Box.

Participants included former Olympians, NCAA Champions and Big Ten Champions. Iowa Head Coach Marc Long, who was a six-time all-American and three-time Big Ten champion at Iowa from 1987-89, was among the former Hawkeyes bidding farewell to Field House Pool after 83 years of competition.

“We actually had 110 alumni swim and many more watching in the stands at the alumni meet,” said Long. “There were many special moments. One being we had 30 women come back to get the letter awards that they had never received, dating back from the 70s to the mid-90s. They were all awarded letters at the banquet. The kind of support shown to our swimming and diving teams is one of the great things about our program. In sheer numbers, the support is tremendous. The only word to describe it is, magical.”

Junior Katarina Tour was named MVP of the women’s team at Saturday’s banquet. She set a new pool record in the 100 fly (55.06). She also earned collegiate best times in the 100 free (51.23) and 200 IM (2:01.51) at the Big Ten Championships. Junior Veronica Rydze was named the Nancilea Underwood Women’s Diving MVP. She was Iowa’s top individual scorer at the Big Ten Championships, finishing eighth in the 1-meter (281.10) and 12th in the 3-meter (284.95).

Rounding out the women’s award winner were seniors Laura Mozdzen and Christine Kuczek. Mozdzen earned the Pennington/Strength of Character Award, which is presented to the women’s team member who exemplifies the qualities of integrity, authenticity, dedication, work ethic, perseverance, loyalty, encouragement and leadership. Mozdzen swam collegiate best times in the 100 fly (55.49), 200 fly (2:02.86), and the 200 IM (2:05.28). Kuczek is a four-year letter winner, who earned the women’s Strength and Conditioning Achievement Award. She posted a collegiate best time of 23.31 in the 50 free.

“The banquet was special,” said Long. “We presented our letter awards and honored some of the successes we had as a team. The women’s team earned Academic all-American status. We had 17 Academic all-Big Ten performers, which was a record for our team.”

2009-2010 Women’s Swimming and Diving Awards
Women’s MVP Award: Katarina Tour
Nancilea Underwood Diving MVP: Veronica Rydze
Pennington/Strength of Character Award: Laura Mozdzen
Strength and Conditioning Achievement Award: Christine Kuczek