Iowa Wrestling Awards Presented

IOWA CITY, IA - University of Iowa sophomore wrestler Steve Mocco has earned the Mike Howard Most Valuable Wrestler Award for the 2002-03 season. He received the award at the team's annual awards banquet Sunday in Iowa City.

Mocco, the 2003 NCAA and Big Ten heavyweight champion, posted a perfect34-0 season record in collegiate competition. The North Bergen, NJ, native became Iowa's first heavyweight national champion since Lou Banach (1983) and the Hawkeyes' first heavyweight Big Ten champion since John Oostendorp (1992). Mocco led the team in dual team points scored (97), pins (15) and quickest pin (16 seconds). He also earned Iowa's most pins award. He was also named 2003 Big Ten Wrestler of the Year. Mocco won titles at the Midlands Championship and Kaufman Brand Open, earning Big Ten Wrestler of the Week accolades on Jan. 2 for his performance at the Midlands.

Junior Cliff Moore won the John and Dorothy Sill Award for Most Dedicated Wrestler. Moore, from Dubuque, IA, won the 133-pound Big Ten title and earned his second all-America honor with a sixth-place finish at the 2003 NCAA Championships. His season record was 31-9.

Moore also shared the team's all-America Award with senior Jessman Smith. Smith won the 2003 Big Ten title at 184 pounds, and earned his second all-America honor with a fourth-place finish at the NCAA tournament. A native of Des Moines, IA, Smith posted a 37-2 season record. He also earned the team's J. Donald McPike, Sr. Award, which is given annually to a graduating senior with the highest grade-point average. He has a 3.11 GPA with a double-major in psychology and health and sport studies.

Redshirt freshmen Ty Eustice and Joe Johnston shared the Mike McGivern Award, given to the team's most courageous wrestler. Eustice, from Blue Earth, MN, posted a 20-9 record at 149 pounds in his first season with the Hawkeyes and was runner-up at the Big Ten Championships. Johnston, from Prairie Village, KS, went 33-15 after joining the varsity lineup in January at 157 pounds. He placed fifth at the Big Ten Championships.

Seniors Matt Anderson and Luke Moffitt shared the team's Sacrifice Award. Anderson, from Shenandoah, IA, posted an 8-7 record at 157 and 165 pounds, missing most of the dual meet season due to injury. He returned for the Big Ten Championships, where he placed eighth at 165. Moffitt, from Estherville, IA, went 20-13 at 141 pounds.

Junior Ryan Fulsaas earned the team's Most Improved Wrestler Award. The Ridgeway, IA, native was 21-12 at 197 pounds, after going 13-22 in his first two seasons with the Hawkeyes.

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