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Spera Garners Scholar-Athlete of the Year Accolades

May 7, 2014

Junior Cory Spera was named the Patriot League Baseball Scholar-Athlete of the Year and earned a place on the Academic All-Patriot League Team, the conference office announced Wednesday. Spera is joined by classmate Tim Lazor on the academic squad.

A day after being recognized as a First Team All-Patriot League selection, Spera adds the Scholar-Athlete of the Year award and the Academic All-Patriot League Team nod to his list of accomplishments. A right-handed pitcher and Biology major, Spera carries a 3.89 cumulative grade-point average and was part of the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll each of his first two seasons on College Hill. Spera, who has aspirations of attending medical school after graduation, volunteers as a Peer Mentor and a Gateway Ambassador, assisting first-year students to become acclimated to life at Lafayette. He is part of Lafayette's Oaks Leadership Academy, serves as a student representative on the Alcohol and Other Drugs Standing Committee and was a presenter for Lafayette's Leadership Education Committee seminar on The C's of Champion.

On the field, Spera appeared in 14 games out of the bullpen for the Maroon and White and pitched 23 2/3 innings. He compiled a 3-1 record with a 1.52 earned run average, including 16 strikeouts and four walks. He also led Lafayette's relief pitchers by holding opponents to a .235 batting average. In League play, Spera was inserted in eight games and posted a 1.32 ERA in 13 2/3 innings of work. During those contests, opponents hit .213 and Spera totaled nine strikeouts, compared to three walks.

Spera is Lafayette's fourth Patriot League Baseball Scholar-Athlete of the Year honoree and the first since James Conrad in 2007.

Accompanying Spera on the Academic All-Patriot League Team is Lazor, whose 3.89 overall GPA equaled Spera's. A Mathematics and Economics double major from Newtown, Pa., Lazor is also a two-time member of the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll and serves as a Peer Mentor. Between the lines, Lazor played in 35 games, making 30 starts at first base and designated hitter. He hit .252 on the season with two home runs, seven doubles and 13 RBIs. Lazor's .369 slugging percentage ranked fourth on the squad.

To be eligible for the Scholar-Athlete of the Year award and the Academic All-Patriot League Team, a student-athlete must have at least a 3.20 cumulative grade point average and be a starter or key player in his/her sport. Freshmen or students in their first academic year at their school are not eligible for the honor.

The Patriot League Scholar-Athlete of the Year for each individual sport comprises the pool of nominees for the Patriot League Male and Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards given out over the summer. One male and one female are selected for this honor.

Patriot League Baseball Scholar-Athlete of the Year: Cory Spera, Lafayette (Jr.)

Baseball Academic All-Patriot League Team
Daniel Cortes, Army (Jr.)
Connor Love, Army (Sr.)
Dan Weigel, Bucknell (Sr.)
Tucker Rekucki, Bucknell (Jr.)
Tom Hrabchak, Bucknell (Sr.)
Joe Ogren, Bucknell (So.)
Jack St. Clair, Holy Cross (Jr.)
Sean Gustin, Holy Cross (So.)
Cory Spera, Lafayette (Jr.)
Tim Lazor, Lafayette (Jr.)
Tim McKay, Lehigh (Jr.)
Mike Garzillo, Lehigh (So.)