April 1, 2011
IOWA CITY, Iowa - University of Iowa sophomore Matt McDonough has been named winner of the Mike Howard Most Valuable Player Award for the Iowa wrestling team. The announcement was made tonight at the team's annual awards banquet.
McDonough is a 125-pounder from Marion, Iowa. He captured his first Big Ten title this season and was runner-up at the NCAA Championships. He has advanced to the NCAA 125-pound in each of the last two years, winning the championship as a freshman in 2010. He scored bonus points in 22 of his 27 wins, leading the team in dual points scored while posting a 16-0 dual record. McDonough was also the recipient of the All-American Award and Most Pins Award. His team-high 14 falls included a streak of six consecutive pins in Big Ten dual competition. He also scored a team-best 80 points in dual competition.
McDonough was one of five winners of the All-American Award. Senior Luke Lofthouse, junior Montell Marion, sophomore Grant Gambrall and redshirt freshman Derek St. John were also recipients of the ward.
Gambrall posted a 25-8 overall mark and 14-2 dual record en route to a third-place finish at the NCAA Championships. A native of Iowa City, Iowa, the 184-pounder placed sixth at the Midlands Championships and fifth at the Big Ten Conference meet before running off six wins in seven bouts at the NCAA Championships. Gambrall owned a 7-1 mark in Big Ten duals and tied for the team lead with eight major decisions.
St. John was named the winner of the Most Improved Award. A native of Parnell, Iowa, St. John recorded a 24-6 overall record en route to a runner-up finish at the Big Ten Championships. He registered a 15-1 record in dual competition at 157 lbs. and earned a No. 6 seed at the NCAA Championships, where he placed fourth. He scored 55 points in dual competition, the third-highest total on the team.
The John and Dorothy Sill Award for most dedicated wrestler went to Luke Lofthouse. A native of Avon, Utah, Lofthouse arrived on campus in 2004 and earned the Coaches Appreciation Award as a freshman. He then left the program from 2005-07 to complete a Mormon mission in Africa. He rejoined the Hawkeyes in 2007 and completed his senior season with a 25-7 record, runner-up finish at the Big Ten Championships, and a fifth-place finish at the NCAA Championships. The 197-pounder posted a 13-2 dual record this season and shared the team lead with eight major decisions.
Marion, a 141-pounder from Des Moines, Iowa, was named winner of the Mike J. McGivern Award for most courageous wrestler. Marion rejoined the Hawkeye lineup in January following a seven month suspension. He returned to post a 13-5 overall record that included five major decisions and one fall. He placed fourth at the Big Ten Championships and fourth at the NCAA Championships. His NCAA finish earned him his second All-America honor is as many years.
The Coaches Appreciation Award was given to senior Aaron Janssen. A native of Emmetsburg, Iowa, Janssen led all Hawkeyes with 28 wins in 2010-11. He placed third at 165 lbs. at the Big Ten Championships and earned a No. 11 seed at the NCAA Championships. He completed his Hawkeye career with a 57-23 overall record and 9-5 mark in Big Ten duals.
Ethan Sebert was the recipient of the J. Donald McPike Senior Award, given annually to the Hawkeye senior with the highest grade-point average. A native of Clarion, Iowa, Sebert is a journalism/health sports studies major. He has competed at 141 and 149 pounds since joining the Hawkeyes in 2007. The Hawkeyes finished the 2010-11 season with five All-Americans and two Big Ten Champions. Iowa earned its fourth straight Big Ten regular season title with a perfect 8-0 conference record and extended its unbeaten dual winning streak to 77 by posting a 15-0-1 overall dual mark. The Hawkeyes' perfect 8-0 home record marked the program's 19th undefeated season at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
2010-11 University of Iowa Wrestling Team Awards
Mike Howard Award (Most Valuable): Matt McDonough
All-American Award: Luke Lofthouse, Montell Marion, Matt McDonough, Grant Gambrall, Derek St. John
J. Donald McPike, Sr. Award (Highest G.P.A.): Ethan Sebert
John & Dorothy Sill Award (Most Dedicated): Luke Lofthouse
Mike J. McGivern Award (Most Courageous): Montell Marion
Most Pins Award: Matt McDonough
Most Improved Award: Derek St. John
Coaches Appreciation Award: Aaron Janssen