Komp, Begel Sweep HL Scholar-Athlete of the Month Honors for March

April 29, 2013

INDIANAPOLIS - UIC softball starting right fielder Kara Komp and Flames' baseball weekend hurler Joey Begel were named the Horizon League's respective Female and Male Scholar-Athletes of the Month for the month of March; it was announced by League officials on Monday afternoon.

Komp has been a driving force in head coach Michelle Venturella's lineup this season - the Joliet, Ill., native is hitting .432 on the season as the Flames' primary lead-off hitter. During the month of March, Komp hit .407 in 54 plate appearances, tallying 22 hits and scoring 11 runs. She carries a cumulative grade-point-average of 3.83 as an Urban Planning major at UIC.

"Kara has done such a tremendous job for us this season," said Venturella. "She has been leading our offense the entire season and does a great job defensively for us in right field. Kara truly embraces what it means to be a student-athlete. She is a 4.0 student and is in the Honors College here at UIC. She has been a tremendous role model to the younger kids in our program and is a tremendous teammate. I am so proud of Kara and have loved watching her grow these past four years both on and off the field."

Komp and the Flames currently control their own destiny in the Horizon League regular season race. UIC is tied atop the League standings with Loyola heading into the final weekend of the regular season, but owns the tiebreaker over the Ramblers by virtue of taking two-of-three in the annual series the weekend of March 29-30.

Begel is one of the Flames' primary weekend starters on the mound. The Darien, Ill., native has made 10 starts this season, and pitched a total of 66.2 innings - opponents are batting just .274 against the right-hander. During the month of March, Begel made six appearances, and recorded a dominant 1.17 earned-run-average. In 30.2 innings pitched, he gave up just four earned runs, struck out 18 batters and allowed an opponents' batting average of just .165. Begel carries a 3.44 cumulative GPA in UIC's Business Marketing program - he compiled a flawless 4.0 GPA during the 2012 Fall Semester.



"Joey is a model student-athlete," said head baseball coach Mike Dee. "His dedication and focus on and off the field serves as a great representation of what UIC baseball is all about. As successful as Joey is in baseball, I know he will perform at an even higher level in the professional world."

The Horizon League recognizes student-athletes with monthly Scholar-Athlete awards throughout the calendar year. To be eligible for Scholar-Athlete of the Month consideration, a student-athlete must have a cumulative grade-point-average of 3.20 or higher (based on a 4.00 scale) and have completed at least one year at the member institution, having earned 24 semester-hour or 36 quarter-hour credits. Athletic accolades are also highly considered in the selection process.