The Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (IIAC) announced its end-of-season wrestling awards Wednesday, March 29, 2017 with Wartburg’s Eric DeVos (Okoboji, Iowa/Waverly-Shell Rock) and Loras’ Guy Patron Jr. (Harvey, La./Jesuit) headlining the announcement as Iowa Conference MVP and Freshman of the Year, respectively. Loras College, first year head coach TJ Miller was voted IIAC Coach of the Year.
In addition, the 2016-17 All-Iowa Conference Wrestling Team was official announced. The 30-member team is composed of the top three Iowa Conference place-winners at the NCAA Division III Central Region Championships.
Most Valuable Player – Eric DeVos, Wartburg College
Eric DeVos earned IIAC MVP after capturing his first NCAA Division III Championship at 174 lbs. DeVos wrapped up his junior year with a 19-0 record that included six falls. DeVos became the 43rd National Champion in Wartburg history with a 10-1 major decision over Ben Swarr of Messiah in the finals. The championship victory avenged a loss to Swarr in last year’s national championship bout. DeVos made his way to a national title with a first-round technical fall over Jaison White of Ithaca, quarter final fall over Washington & Jefferson’s Sonnieboy Blanco, and a semifinal 8-1 decision over Richard Carlson of Wisconsin-La Crosse. DeVos is now a two-time All-American with one national title and one runner-up finish.
Freshman of the Year – Guy Patron Jr., Loras College
Guy Patron Jr. was named IIAC Freshman of the Year, as voted on by the league’s head coaches. He capped of his freshman campaign with a 3rd-place finish at the NCAA Division III Wrestling National Championships. On his way to All-American honors at 197 lbs., Patron Jr. suffered a first-round loss to Messiah’s Kyle Koser but bounced back to defeat three consecutive seeded wrestlers in the consolation bracket. He ended the season with a 39-6 record and 20 wins by fall, which ranks third in Division III. Patron Jr. 3rd-place finish is the highest placing by a freshman in Loras College history.
Coach of the Year – TJ Miller, Loras College
In his first season at the helm of the Loras College wrestling program, TJ Miller was selected Iowa Conference Coach of the Year by the conference’s head coaches. Miller led the Duhawks to a 7-1 dual meet record in conference action and 12-7 overall. Miller was also named the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) Rookie Coach of the Year following Loras’ best finish in program history at the 2017 NCAA Division III National Championships (6th, 46.5 points). Miller’s program saw three wrestlers earn All-American honors this season for the eighth time in program history and first time since 2002.
Nine of the 30 All-Iowa Conference honorees were Central Regional Champions. Wartburg crowned a league leading, five champions in Kenneth Martin (149lbs.), Logan Thomsen (157lbs.), Eric DeVos (174lbs.), Kyle Fank (197lbs.), and Lance Evans (285lbs.). Central had two champions, CJ Pestano (125lbs.) and Ryan Vandall (165lbs). Loras’s Clint Lembeck was the sole champion for the Duhawks. Lembeck was also named Central Region Outstanding Wrestler. Luther also crowned one champion, Justin Kreiter (184lbs.).
The All-Iowa Conference team is made up of 10 Wartburg wrestlers, seven Loras, five Central, three Luther, two Coe, and one from Simpson and Dubuque. 16 of the 30 All-Iowa Conference selections repeated from 2015-16 while Jan Rosenberg of Coe, Connor Campo of Wartburg, Michael Triplett of Loras, Martin of Wartburg, Kreiter of Luther, and Central’s Matt Seabold all became three time honorees.
The complete 2016-17 All-Iowa Conference Wrestling team is as follows:
|CJ Pestano !||125||1st place||Central||Jr.||Torrance, Calif./Torrance|
|Arnulfo Olea !||125||2nd place||Wartburg||Sr.||Exeter, Calif./Exeter|
|Jan Rosenberg !$||125||4th place||Coe||Sr.||Rockaway, N.J./Morris Knolls|
|Cam Timok||133||2nd place||Central||So.||Glen Allen, Va./Hermitage|
|Connor Campo !$||133||3rd place||Wartburg||Sr.||Covington, La./ St. Paul’s|
|Michael Triplett !$||133||5th place||Loras||Jr.||Normal, Ill./Normal West|
|Clint Lembeck||141||1st place||Loras||Fr.||Marion, Iowa/Xavier|
|Cross Cannoe||141||2nd place||Wartburg||So.||Trumbull, Conn./Trumbull|
|Daniel Radcliffe||141||3rd place||Central||Fr.||Lockport, Ill./Lockport Township|
|Kenneth Martin @% !$||149||1st place||Wartburg||Sr.||Omaha, Neb./Lincoln SW|
|Cole Erickson||149||3rd place||Coe||Fr.||Mediapolis, Iowa/Mediapolis|
|Evan Weaver !||149||5th place||Loras||Sr.||Normal, Ill./University|
|Logan Thomsen||157||1st place||Wartburg||Jr.||La Porte City, Iowa/ Union|
|Jimmy Davis||157||2nd place||Loras||Jr.||Aurora, Ill./Waubonsie Valley|
|Quincy Kalkbrenner||157||3rd place||Dubuque||Jr.||Lena, Ill./Lena-Winslow|
|Ryan Vandall !||165||1st place||Central||Sr.||Phoenix, Ariz./Moon Valley|
|Tristan Zurfluh !||165||2nd place||Luther||Sr.||Sparta, Wis./Sparta|
|Andrew Steiert $||165||3rd place||Wartburg||Sr.||Waverly, Iowa/|
|Eric DeVos !||174||1st place||Wartburg||Jr.||Okaboji, Iowa/Waverly-Shell Rock|
|Javier Reyes !||174||3rd place||Luther||Sr.||Oakley Calif./Buchanon|
|Eddie Smith||174||4th place||Loras||Fr.||Prairie Du Sac, Wis./Sauk Prairie|
|Justin Kreiter !$||184||1st place||Luther||Sr.||Davenport, Iowa/North Scott|
|Bryan Levsen !||184||3rd place||Wartburg||Sr.||Bettendorf, Iowa/Bettendorf|
|Awais Arain||184||4th place||Loras||Jr.||Bolingbrook, Ill./Plainfield East|
|Kyle Fank||197||1st place||Wartburg||Jr.||Independence, Iowa/Independence|
|Matt Seabold !$||197||2nd place||Central||Sr.||Burlington, Iowa/Burlington|
|Guy Patron Jr.||197||3rd place||Loras||Fr.||Harvey, La./Jesuit|
|Lance Evans !||285||1st place||Wartburg||Jr.||Solon, Iowa/Iowa|
|Quin Gilliam !||285||3rd place||Loras||So.||Shreveport, La./C.E. Byrd|
|Colby Vlieger||285||4th place||Simpson||Sr.||Des Moines, Iowa / Indianola|
|! – 2015-16 All-Conference|
|@ – 2015-16 MVP|
|# – 2015-16 Freshman of the Year|
|$ – 2014-15 All-Conference|
|% – 2014-15 MVP|
|^ – 2014-15 Freshman of the Year|
|& – 2013-14 All-Conference|
|* – 2013-14 MVP|
|~ – 2013-14 Freshman of the Year|