Wrestlers Head To Midlands

Dec. 23, 2010

PARDON OUR PROGRESS! As friends of the UI and fans of the Hawkeyes know, the UI Athletics Department is well into a multi-million dollar revitalization of Carver-Hawkeye Arena. This important and exciting project has reduced for this season the number of ticket windows that are operational on game nights. Fans attending the home events of the 2010-11 UI men’s basketball, women’s basketball and wrestling teams are invited to avoid game night delays by purchasing their event tickets online or in advance of game day. If your schedule doesn’t allow for an advance purchase, we recommend you consider arriving at the Arena a little earlier than originally planned. Go Hawks!

The sixth-ranked University of Iowa wrestling team (7-0, 1-0 Big Ten) will try for its 22nd Midlands title Dec. 29-30 in Evanston, IL. The defending team champion, Iowa has won the most team titles (21) in the 47 years of the meet. All matches will be held at Welsh-Ryan Arena on Northwestern’s campus.

Tickets can be purchased from the Northwestern University Athletic Ticket Office at (847) 491-2287 or www.nusports.com. All-session passes are $50 for reserved theater-style seats, $38 for adult bleacher general admission and $32 for student bleacher general admission. Session start times and individual session ticket prices are as follows:

Session – Day – Start Time – Ticket Prices (R/AB/SB)
Session I – Wednesday – 9:30 a.m. – NA/$9/$7
Session II – Wednesday – 7 p.m. – $11/$10/$8
Session III – Thursday – Noon – $13/$11/$9
Session IV – Thursday – 7 p.m. – $15/$13/$10
R – reserved seats, AB – adult bleachers, SB – student bleachers

Radio – Steven Grace and two-time Hawkeye NCAA champion and four-time all-American Mark Ironside will call Thursday’s finals live on AM-800, KXIC. Live broadcasts from all four sessions are available on hawkeyesports.com using the XXL All-Access subscription ($14.95 per month or $119.95 per year).

Internet – Press releases, tournament brackets and tournament notes will be available on the Northwestern University website, www.nusports.com. Session results and recaps, as well as the 2010-11 Hawkeye wrestling media guide, will be available on the University of Iowa website, hawkeyesports.com. Current Hawkeye staff and student-athlete head shots can be found at pics.hawkeyesports.com.

The 2010 Midlands Tournament Committee announced the top contenders for the 48th annual event. Hawkeye sophomores Matt McDonough (125) and Grant Gambrall (184), who have identical 7-0 records, are both listed as the top wrestler in the their respective fields. Redshirt freshmen Tony Ramos (133) and Derek St. John (157), and senior Luke Lofthouse (197) are listed as the fourth-best competitors. Ramos is 4-0 on the season, while St. John is 7-0 and Lofthouse is 6-1. Sophomore Mark Ballweg (7-0) is listed as the fifth-best competitor at 141, while senior Jake Kerr is the seventh-best at 165 with a 4-1 record. Sophomore Nate Moore (133), redshirt freshman Ethen Lofthouse (174) and junior Blake Rasing (Hwt.) are listed as other contenders at their weight classes. Although the final seeding for Midlands may extend beyond the top eight at each weight class, the pretournament contenders reflect only the top eight wrestlers and are subject to change. Final seeding for the event will be determined Dec. 28.

Iowa has won the most team titles (21) in the 47 years of Midlands history. The Hawkeyes won their first team title in 1974, and proceeded to win nine of the next 11. Iowa also won team titles in 1990, 1992, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2007, 2008 and 2009. Other team winners include Iowa State (8), Michigan State (3), Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club (3), Illinois (3), Michigan (2), Arizona State (1), Minnesota (1), North Carolina (1) and Oklahoma State (1). Team scores were not kept at four tournaments (1991, 1993, 1994, 1995).

Seven former Hawkeyes are enshrined in the Midlands Hall of Fame. They are Ed Banach, Chris Campbell, Steve Combs, Tim Cysewski, Barry Davis, Randy Lewis and Chuck Yagla. Former Hawkeye Head Coach Dan Gable is also a Midlands Hall of Fame member.

Seven former Hawkeyes earned the Art Kraft Champion of Champions Award, while nine were named the Dan Gable Outstanding Wrestler. The Art Kraft Champion of Champions were Lenny Zalesky (1980), Jim Zalesky (1983), Jim Heffernan (1986), Jeff McGinness (1995), Joe Williams (1996), Eric Juergens (1999) and Mark Perry (2007). The Dan Gable Outstanding Wrestlers were Randy Lewis (1979), Lenny Zalesky (1980), Ed Banach (1981), Royce Alger (1994), Jeff McGinness (1995), Lincoln McIlravy (1997), Joe Williams (1999, 2000), Mark Perry (2007) and Brent Metcalf (2009). Gable was named the tournament’s outstanding wrestler five times (1966-69, 1971).

Eight former Hawkeyes are members of the prestigious 20-in-4 club, which requires a wrestler to record at least 20 wins in their first four years of competition. They are John Bowlsby (22 – 1974, 1976-78), Barry Davis (20 – 1980-83), Joe Williams (20 – 1993-96), Mark Ironside (22 – 1994-97), Wes Hand (20 – 1996-99), Jody Strittmatter (20 – 1997-2000), Doug Schwab (20 – 1997-2000) and Cliff Moore (23 – 2001-03, 2005). Gable was the first club member, recording 20 wins from 1966-69. Through the 2009 tournament, only 21 wrestlers achieved this feat out of 9,148 participants.

Former Hawkeye Joe Williams holds the most individual titles in Midlands history, winning 10. Other former Hawkeyes to win at least three titles are Tim Cysweski (5), Mark Ironside (4), Royce Alger (3), Ed Banach (3), Chris Campbell (3), Jim Heffernan (3), Randy Lewis (3), Brent Metcalf (3) and Chuck Yagla (3). Ironside has the most wins (27) at 141 pounds, and he and Cysewski hold the most titles (4 each) at that weight. Jim Heffernan holds the most titles (3) at 157, while Williams holds the most wins (35) and titles (7) at 174. Pat Kennedy holds the fastest fall (11 seconds) at 165, while Verlyn Strellner holds the most falls (10) at 197. Gable holds the most titles (3) and falls (13) at 149 pounds.

The Hawkeyes won their 21st overall and third straight Midlands Championships title with 168.5 points at the 47th annual tournament Dec. 30, 2009, in Evanston, IL. Iowa State placed second with 144.5, while Central Michigan placed third with 118.0.

Iowa went 3-3 in the finals, crowning three champions in redshirt freshman Matt McDonough (#3 seed at 125), and seniors Brent Metcalf (#1 seed at 149) and Jay Borschel (#1 seed at 174). It was Metcalf’s third Midlands title and the first for McDonough and Borschel. Metcalf was named the Dan Gable Most Outstanding Wrestler for the tournament, and took home the Individual High Scorer Award for racking up 32.5 team points. Hawkeye redshirt freshman Nate Moore (133) earned the tournament’s Fastest Fall Award, sticking his first opponent in 46 seconds.

McDonough sparked a strong Iowa start with a 9-7 win in sudden victory over #4 seed Andrew Long in the 125-pound title match. Down 5-2 at the end of the first period, McDonough scored an escape and takedown to tie the score at 5-5 in the second period. Long, who accumulated over one minute of riding time in the bout, scored an escape to start the third period to take a 6-5 lead. McDonough scored a takedown near the end of the third period to take a 7-6 lead, but Long’s riding time point sent the match into sudden victory. McDonough scored a takedown in sudden victory for the win.

In a rematch of the 2008 Midlands title match, Metcalf won a 9-2 decision over #2 seed Kyle Ruschell of Wisconsin. The Hawkeye senior scored team bonus points in five of his six Midlands matches.

Borschel picked up his 75th career victory with a 6-1 win over #2 seed Ben Bennett of Central Michigan in the finals. The Hawkeye senior scored a takedown and two nearfall points near the end of the first period, an escape early in the second period and accumulated over two minutes of riding time in the match. A three-time Midlands placewinner, Borschel placed second in 2007 and third in 2008 before winning the 2009 title.

Also placing for the Hawkeyes were seniors Joe Slaton (#4 seed at 141-3rd), Ryan Morningstar (#3 seed at 165-3rd), Phillip Keddy (#3 seed at 184-4th) and Chad Beatty (#5 seed at 197-3rd), sophomore Montell Marion (#9 seed at 141-6th), redshirt freshmen Nate Moore (133-6th) and Grant Gambrall (184-6th), and true freshman Derek St. John (157-5th). It was the first time that Beatty, Moore, Gambrall and St. John placed at Midlands.

Iowa’s overall dual meet record is 882-215-30 (.796) in 101 seasons. The Hawkeyes have won 23 national titles and 34 Big Ten titles. Iowa’s 51 NCAA champions have won a total of 78 NCAA individual titles, crowning six three-time and 15 two-time champions. The Hawkeyes’ 102 Big Ten champions have won a total of 186 conference titles. There have been seven four-time, 18 three-time and 27 two-time Iowa winners. Iowa’s 140 all-Americans have earned all-America status 286 times, including 17 four-time, 29 three-time and 37 two-time honorees.

Iowa has won 68 straight dual matches, which is a school record. The current streak started with a win over Cornell (32-3) on Jan. 12, 2008, which was the first match after Iowa lost to Oklahoma State (19-14) on Jan. 5. The 68-match winning streak ranks fourth-best in NCAA wrestling history behind three Oklahoma State streaks. The Cowboys won 76 straight duals from 1937-51, and had two 69-match streaks (1921-32 and 1996-99).

The Hawkeyes have won 44 consecutive duals on the road, which is also a school record. That streak started with a 20-13 win at Iowa State on Dec. 9, 2007.

Iowa has won its last 29 duals at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. That streak, which ranks fourth-best in school history, started with a 27-13 win over Penn State on Jan. 20, 2008, which was also the first home match after the loss to the Cowboys. The school record is 55 (1/9/1977-12/18/1983).

Against Big Ten foes, the Hawkeyes have won their last 28 duals, including 13 at home and 15 on the road. The 28 league duals rank second in school history, while the 13 home duals rank third and the 15 road duals rank fourth. Iowa’s school record for consecutive Big Ten wins is 98 (12/13/1975-1/28/1989), while the records for Big Ten home wins is 63 (1/17/1975-1/3/1998) and road wins is 54 (1/19/1974-1/28/1989).

The seventh-ranked Hawkeyes extended their winning streak to 68 duals and improved to 7-0 on the season (1-0 Big Ten) with a 39-0 win at Northern Iowa Dec. 9. The Hawkeyes posted their 36th straight win over the Panthers (4-4) in front of a capacity crowd of 2,200 at the West Gym in Cedar Falls.

Iowa held a 29-1 takedown advantage on the night, recording two pins and three major decisions in its 10 victories. The Hawkeyes were tough on top, with seven wrestlers accumulating at least 1:00 of riding time in their bouts. Six Iowa wrestlers kept their undefeated records intact with wins.

Iowa redshirt freshman Tony Ramos opened the dual at 133 with his 12-3 major decision of Northern Iowa sophomore Ryan Jauch. Ramos scored four takedowns and accumulated 2:23 in riding time to stay undefeated at 4-0. Hawkeye sophomore Mark Ballweg also kept his 7-0 record spotless with a 3-0 win over Panther junior Aaron Senzee at 141, collecting 3:49 in riding time. At 149, Iowa sophomore Jeret Chiri led Jamal Lawrence, 8-3, in the third period before turning the Panther in 5:59 and collecting his second pin of the season. Redshirt freshman Derek St. John improved to 7-0 with his 8-4 victory over David Bonin at 157. Hawkeye senior Aaron Janssen gave Iowa a 19-0 lead going into the intermission with his 4-0 decision over Panther Nick Pickerell at 165. Janssen, who tallied 2:08 of riding time in the bout, is now 10-0 this season.

Redshirt freshman Ethen Lofthouse kept the Iowa momentum going with his 16-5 major decision over redshirt freshman Brice Wolf at 174. Lofthouse snagged seven takedowns and totaled 1:07 in riding time. Sophomore Grant Gambrall kept his 7-0 record intact with a 4-2 decision over redshirt freshman Ryan Loder at 184. Hawkeye senior Luke Lofthouse scored eight takedowns and accumulated 3:24 in riding time for his 19-7 major decision over Joe Johnson at 197. Hawkeye junior Blake Rasing picked up his 15th career victory with a 2-0 decision over nationally-ranked junior heavyweight Christian Brantley. After a scoreless first period, Rasing rode Brantley the entire second period and scored an escape early in the third period for the 2-0 win. Hawkeye sophomore Matt McDonough ended the dual with his 1:12 pin of Terrance Young to remain undefeated at 7-0.

#7 Iowa 39, Northern Iowa 0
133 – Tony Ramos (Iowa) maj. dec. Ryan Jauch (Northern Iowa), 12-3
141 – Mark Ballweg (Iowa) dec. Aaron Senzee (Northern Iowa), 3-0
149 – Jeret Chiri (Iowa) pinned Jamal Lawrence (Northern Iowa), 5:59
157 – Derek St. John (Iowa) dec. David Bonin (Northern Iowa), 8-4
165 – Aaron Janssen (Iowa) dec. Nick Pickerell (Northern Iowa), 4-0
174 – Ethen Lofthouse (Iowa) maj. dec. Brice Wolf (Northern Iowa), 16-5
184 – Grant Gambrall (Iowa) dec. Ryan Loder (Northern Iowa), 4-2
197 – Luke Lofthouse (Iowa) maj. dec. Joe Johnson (Northern Iowa), 19-7
Hwt. – Blake Rasing (Iowa) dec. Christian Brantley (Northern Iowa), 2-0
125 – Matt McDonough (Iowa) pinned Terrance Young (Northern Iowa), 1:12

As friends of the UI and fans of the Hawkeyes know, the UI Athletics Department is well into a multi-million dollar revitalization of Carver-Hawkeye Arena. This important and exciting project has reduced the number of ticket windows that are operational on game nights. Fans attending Iowa’s home wrestling meets are invited to avoid delays by purchasing their event tickets online or in advance. If your schedule doesn’t allow for an advance purchase, we recommend you consider arriving at the arena a little earlier than originally planned. The North entrance is no longer accessible from the outside of the facility. Fans can enter and purchase tickets at the West and South entrances. Arena doors will open 90 minutes before an event. The East entrance will serve as the event pass gate.

Three bid cities and their local organizing committees have been named as finalists to host the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Wrestling. The date for the event will be the weekend of April 20-21, 2012. Alphabetically, the finalist bid cities are: Columbus, Ohio; Council Bluffs, Iowa; and Iowa City, Iowa.

The organizing committees selected as finalists have been invited to make an in-person presentation on behalf of their bid on either January 12 or January 13 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Seven cities submitted bids to host the event. Greensboro, N.C., Hampton, Va., Oklahoma City, Okla. and Pontiac, Mich. are not finalists at this time. Due to the dates of international Olympic qualification tournaments in wrestling, it has been determined that the event must be held on the weekend of April 20-21.

Three of the bids proposed different dates for the event. The number of finalist cities could be increased if one or more of those cities are able to secure the weekend of April 20-21 for the event. If the date change occurs in a prompt fashion, the cities could be invited to make an in-person presentation either January 12 or 13.

A selection committee will review the finalist bid presentations. The committee will include USA Wrestling staff and athletes, as well as representatives from the U.S. Olympic Committee. An announcement on the bid selected to host the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Wrestling is targeted for Jan. 17, 2011.

Each bid proposal includes hosting the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for Wrestling, which will feature competition in the three Olympic styles of the sport – men’s freestyle, Greco-Roman and women’s freestyle. The competition will determine the U.S. athletes in both sports who will qualify to represent the United States at the 2012 Olympic Games in London, England.

On the 2010-11 Hawkeye wrestling team, there are three sets of brothers, two wrestlers whose fathers wrestled at Iowa and two uncle-nephew combinations.

Senior Matt Ballweg (157), sophomore Mark Ballweg (133/141) and freshman Jacob Ballweg (141) are brothers who hail from Waverly. They are the fifth set of three brothers to wrestle at Iowa, and the third set to be on the roster at the same time. The other sets of three brothers to compete for the Hawkeyes are Ed Banach, Lou Banach and Steve Banach; Marty Kistler, Harlan Kistler and Lindley Kistler; Mike Uker, Ben Uker and Joe Uker; and Lenny Zalesky, Larry Zalesky and Jim Zalesky.

Junior Stew Gillmor (149/157) and freshman Walt Gillmor (165) are brothers from Donahue, while sophomore Nate Moore (133) and freshman Nick Moore (157/165) are brothers from Iowa City.

Sophomore Matt McDonough (125/133) and redshirt freshman Nick Trizzino have fathers who wrestled for the Hawkeyes. Mike McDonough wrestled at Iowa from 1974-76, while Mark Trizzino was an all-American (1984) and four-year letterwinner (1981-84) for the Hawkeyes.

Senior Luke Lofthouse (197) is the uncle of Hawkeye redshirt freshman Ethen Lofthouse (174). Nick Trizzino’s uncle, Scott Trizzino, was a three-time all-American (1978-79-81) and four-time letterwinner (1977-79, 1981) for the Hawkeyes.

Single meet Iowa wrestling tickets can be ordered from the UI Athletics Ticket Office, at (319) 335-9323, or online at hawkeyesports.com.

For the Southern Illinois Edwardsville, Indiana and Michigan duals, tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for youth, if purchased in advance. Tickets for those four duals are $12 for adults and $6 for youth if purchased at the door.

For the Ohio State dual, tickets are $13 for adults, $7 for youth and $2 for children ages five and under, if purchased in advance. Tickets for those two duals are $15 for adults, $8 for youth and $2 for children ages five and under, if purchased at the door.

The Hawkeye wrestling staff of Tom Brands, Terry Brands, Mike Zadick, Kurt Backes and Danny Song earned a total of one Olympic gold medal, one Olympic bronze medal, five NCAA titles, nine conference titles and 12 All-America honors.

For dates and more information about 2011 Iowa Wrestling Summer camps visit www.iowawrestlingcamps.com.

The sixth-ranked Hawkeyes (7-0, 1-0 Big Ten) will host Southern Illinois Edwardsville (1-6) Jan. 7 at 7 p.m. at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. The dual has been designated Autograph and Half-Price Concessions Night. After the dual, Iowa wrestlers will sign autographs at tables around the Carver-Hawkeye Arena concourse.

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