Q&A With Warsaw Star Burke Paddock on His Commitment to Iowa and More

Last week, Warsaw state champion and four-time state placer Burke Paddock went to Iowa City.  Before leaving the University of Iowa campus, Paddock informed head coach Tom Brands and his staff that he will be joining the Hawkeyes in the fall of 2014.   New York Wrestling News spoke to Paddock about his decision and what else the future holds.

New York Wrestling News (NYWN): What were the main reasons you chose Iowa?

Burke Paddock (BP): I’ve always loved the way the Iowa team wrestles.  I always liked watching the Hawkeyes because the style there matches my style.  When I visited, I loved the guys, the coaches, the facilities – everything. I watched a practice and everything just felt right.

NYWN: You had planned on making more unofficial visits this summer.  What made you commit this week?

BP: I knew I had to go with my gut.  My brothers [Paul and Ian] gave me the same advice. Paul (Edinboro) told me to take all my visits if I wanted to, but that if something felt right, I should just do it. Edinboro was one of the first places he visited and he said he knew it was what he wanted. Ian (Ohio State) said the same thing.  Instead of messing around with other schools, I realized I just wanted to commit.

NYWN: What other schools were you considering?

BP: I saw a few other campuses.  I went to Binghamton, I saw Ohio State with my brother.  I went out to Clarion with my coach.   I liked all of them, but I didn’t feel they were 100% right like Iowa was.  Now I definitely feel some pressure is off.  I don’t have to worry about all the phone calls.  It was really hard telling Coach [Troy] Letters [of Clarion] and Coach [Jasen] Borshoff [of Binghamton]. I really liked them both a lot.

NYWN: What stood out to you on your visit?

BP: Carver Hawkeye Arena was one of the first places I went with Coach [Ryan] Morningstar.  Walking down those stairs, onto the floor – it was just awesome. I can’t wait to wrestle Coach Morningstar and guys like Mike Evans. There are so many great wrestlers there. 

NYWN: What weight do you plan to wrestle at Iowa?

Either 165 or 174.  I have a whole year to go in high school and then a redshirt year, so we’ll see how big I am then.

NYWN: You’re finally home – talk about the last few weeks prior to your visit to Iowa.

BP: I thought I wrestled pretty well at the Junior World Team Trials, except for my first match.  I wrestled back for third, but after watching the finals, I’m pretty sure I could have been there.

At the Junior Duals in Greco, I wrestled more All-American kids than not, and didn’t have too many close matches. In Freestyle, I was undefeated going into the last match.  The last wrestler [Ryan Blees of North Dakota] was tough, I beat him twice already at the tournament.  It was my 19th match of the week and I guess I was a little out of gas.  

[Paddock had four techs and two pins in Greco while going 7-0; he had six techs and a pin while going 8-1 in Freestyle].

NYWN: What’s next for you?

BP: I’m leaving pretty soon for Fargo.  I definitely want to bring back the gold for New York this year. I’m confident I can do it; now it’s time to just get it done.   I’m focused on winning Greco first.

After that, I’ll keep working out back home and I’ll play football in the fall.

NYWN: You pinned your way through the state tournament last year at 160.  What are your goals for this year?

BP: I want to get that state title again and help my brother [Aaron] get to states.  I’ll probably wrestle 170.

NYWN: Anything else?

I want to thank my family and especially my dad for being on the road with me for the last three weeks, driving me around to all these places.   I’m really excited to be a Hawkeye.

Photo by BV



Buffalo Raises over $14,000 at Takedown Cancer Dual; Drops Matches to Iowa and Bloomsburg

Courtesy of buffalobulls.com

BUFFALO, NY – A crowd of over 1,700 fans came out to Alumni Arena for the fourth annual Takedown Cancer fundraiser and dual on Monday evening to open the home schedule, as the Bulls (0-2) hosted the fifth-ranked Iowa Hawkeyes. The event, which raised over $14,000 for cancer research for the day, was marked with explosive offense between the two teams, with the Hawkeyes (10-0) prevailing 39-3. Mark Lewandowski earned a win at 165 pounds for the team’s lone win.

“What people don’t see is the controlled steady pace that Iowa wrestles,” head coach Jim Beichner said. “They’re consistent and put the pressure on you. We need to do the same in return, but today we faded. We scored a lot of takedowns, but ultimately you need to win those battles and win those matches. You have nothing to lose against a team like Iowa, but when you’re aggressive you need to have a big gas tank to go with it.”

Lewandowski, who came into the night ranked in the low 20s at his class by most media outlets, was a slight underdog in his match against Iowa’s Nick Moore. The senior started with a takedown in the final minute of the first period and rode Moore out. He scored another takedown in the second period and led 4-2 going into the final two minutes of the match. He made a quick escape, then took Moore down and earned a riding time point for the 8-3 win.

“Mark was in control tonight, and that comes with experience,” Beichner said. “He dominated from start to finish and was able to get an important win. We want him to be on the All-American podium at the end of this season, and if he keeps wrestling like this he’ll get there.”

After only one wrestler scored more than five points in the season-opening dual against Central Michigan, the Bulls were able to be more liberal on offense for the night, case in point with the 149 pound bout between Blake Roulo and Mike Kelly. In the first 20 seconds of the match, Roulo scored a big takedown and turned Kelly for two near-fall points. Kelly would squeeze away and it would spark off a first period that saw an 8-8 tie after just the first three minutes. Kelly would ultimately take advantage of Roulo’s aggression, turning a handful of errant scoring attempts by Roulo into takedowns and earned a 21-13 win.

RESULTS: Iowa 39, Buffalo 3
141 – #11 Mark Ballweg (IA) major dec. Andrew Schutt (UB), 12-3; 4-0
149 – Michael Kelly (IA) major dec. Blake Roulo (UB), 21-13; 8-0
157 – #1 Derek St. John (IA) major dec. Wally Maziarz (UB), 21-7; 12-0
165 – Mark Lewandowski (UB) dec. Nick Moore (IA), 8-3; 12-3
174- #7 Mike Evans (IA) major dec. John-Martin Cannon (UB), 14-1; 16-3
184 – #7 Ethen Lofthouse (IA) major dec. Tony Lock (UB), 12-4; 20-3
197 – Nathan Burak (IA) major dec. Angelo Malvestuto (UB), 12-4; 24-3
285 – #5 Bobby Telford (IA) pinned Justin Heiserman (UB), 1:36; 30-3
125 – Matt Gurule (IA) dec. Max Soria (UB), 15-10; 33-3
133 – #3 Tony Ramos (IA) pinned Erik Galloway (UB), 4:27; 39-3

Bloomsburg 18, Buffalo 15 (Tuesday)

BLOOMSBURG, PA – The Buffalo wrestling team rallied strong from its Monday night loss to Iowa, but could not close the deal for its first win of the season on Tuesday and lost 18-15 to Bloomsburg. The Bulls (0-3) and Huskies (7-2) won five matches apiece, but Bloomsburg scored a technical fall and major decision to boost it to the win.

The Bulls took three of the first four matches of the night, starting with Mike Soria‘s 6-4 win over Sean Boylan. Filling in for his brother Max, who was hurt early in his match against Iowa last night, Mike was able to get the win in his first-ever start in a dual meet and start the team off on the right foot. After a loss at 133, Andrew Schutt scored a 7-2 win over Matt Rappo after cruising to a 6-1 lead after just the first period.

His win was followed by Blake Roulo, who won 2-1 at 149 after neither wrestler could manage to take the other down. He was able to get a third period escape and used riding time to get the win and pad the UB lead. It would come in handy, as the Huskies earned a tech fall at 157 and Mark Lewandowski lost 3-2 to Josh Veltre in a battle of two top-20 ranked wrestlers at 165 pounds.

Bloomsburg’s lead would be short-lived, as John-Martin Cannon rebounded strong from a frustrating loss to Iowa and won 9-4 thanks to a quartet of takedowns against Chris Smith. He was followed by a tremendous effort from true freshman Tony Lock, who earned his first career dual meet win in a big spot. He beat Andre Petroski 4-2 thanks to a pair of points in the third period to break a 2-2 tie that had held since the first period. The win would give the Bulls a 15-11 lead in the dual, but a major decision loss at 197 pounds and a win for the Huskies in the final match of the night would provide the 18-15 final.

Now after two matches in just over 24 hours, the team will have an extended break for the Holidays before returning to action. Next up will be The Midlands Championship Tournament and the Brute Invitational on Dec. 29, when the team will send selected wrestlers to each event to compete against some of the very best in the country. Full results from each tournament will be available through BuffaloBulls.com.

RESULTS: Bloomsburg 18, Buffalo 15

125: Mike Soria (UB) dec. Sean Boylan (BU), 6-4; 3-0
133: Nick Wilcox (BU) dec. Erik Galloway (UB), 9-4; 3-3
141: Andrew Schutt (UB) dec. Matt Rappo (BU), 7-2; 6-3
149: Blake Roulo (UB) dec. Simon Kitzis (BU), 2-1; 9-3
157: Frank Hickman (BU) tech. fall Wally Maziarz (UB), 22-6, 5:48; 9-8
165: Josh Veltre (BU) dec. Mark Lewandowski (UB), 3-2; 9-11
174: John-Martin Cannon (UB) dec. Chris Smith (BU), 9-4; 12-11
184: Tony Lock (UB) dec. Andre Petroski (BU), 4-2; 15-11
197: Richard Perry (BU) maj. dec. Angelo Malvestuto (UB), 13-5; 15-15
285: Justin Grant (BU) dec. Justin Heiserman (UB), 5-1; 15-18

Here Come the Hawkeyes: Iowa Visits Buffalo for Annual Takedown Cancer Fundraiser

Monday night provides a unique opportunity to fans in the Buffalo area – the chance to watch one of the storied programs in college wrestling come to town for an exciting dual as well as the chance to contribute to a great cause.

At 7:00 p.m. the #5 Iowa Hawkeyes will visit the hometown Bulls for the annual “Takedown Cancer” dual meet which will benefit a number of cancer-related charities.

Mark Lewandowski, Photo by BV

Buffalo first got involved a few years ago to benefit former Bulls wrestler Jeff Parker, who was battling melanoma at the time. While he passed away in 2010, the team’s involvement has continued. This year, according to head coach Jim Beichner, the funds raised will be donated to the Jeff Parker Foundation, Carly’s Club and to a family or families in the area with a child currently battling cancer.

Beginning at 5 p.m. there will be a number of fundraising activities, including auctions including 60-80 items, according to Beichner. The purchase of a $10 raffle ticket earns entry into the drawing for the grand prizes, which are two round trip Delta plane tickets to anywhere in the continental United States, four tickets to Jim Kelly’s suite at the upcoming Buffalo Bills-New York Jets game and a dinner for 10 at a popular local restaurant, Ilio DePaolo’s.

The Bulls are hoping to exceed last year’s fundraising total of $23,000. However, they aren’t losing sight of what they need to do – battle the Hawkeyes.

“We think this is going to be a great fundraiser,” Beichner said. “But we remember that we’re there to wrestle Iowa. We’re there as a team to compete and everything else happening is a wonderful bonus. It’s a great sign for our program to have a Big 10 or Big 12 team in our home gym for the third year in a row. Iowa’s probably the most dominant program in the last 30 years or so and we are proud to have them come to Buffalo.”

The Hawkeyes went 2-0 at the Grapple at the Garden, to push their 2012-13 record to a perfect 10-0. Eight of their starters sit in the Top 20 nationally.

Beichner said his group is looking forward to the challenge.

“We know they’re a great team,” he said. “We think we’ll have some very competitive match ups. I expect a full effort from every guy. The Hawkeye symbol shouldn’t matter. We need to have the mindset when we step out on the mat that we’ll win.”

Leading the way for the Bulls are nationally-ranked seniors Mark Lewandowski and John-Martin Cannon. Lewandowski is 13-2 at 165 pounds this year after a one-point loss to Mike Ottinger of Central Michigan in the team’s first dual meet of the season.

“Mark is wrestling very well,” Beichner said. “He lost on a penalty point and you hate to see a match between two good wrestlers decided that way on a late call. He wrestled an aggressive match – he was by far the more aggressive wrestler. He has the right mindset and will respond.”

Cannon has seen limited action due to a number of setbacks this season. He was out early in the campaign while recovering from an injury and in his first bout back, he was hit in the face, suffering a broken nose and a concussion. However, he returned and notched a victory against Central Michigan.

“[Cannon] is getting back to 100%,” the coach said. “He looks really good and he’ll be a threat no matter who he wrestles.”

A third grappler Beichner singled out was 197 pounder Angelo Malvestuto, who he said “wrestled extremely well” against the Chippewas. He expects those wrestlers and others to step up in front of the hometown crowd.

“We’re really excited about [Monday],” Beichner said. “The thing we really want to promote is that we’re having the University of Iowa in our home gym. It’s our opportunity to wrestle well against great opponents. That’s what’s so important for our program.”

To find out more about the organizations involved in this event:

Jeff Parker Foundation

Carly’s Club