FLORENCE, S.C. – Francis Marion University athletic director Murray Hartzler recently announced the names of nine Patriot student-athletes named to the university’s chapter of Chi Alpha Sigma, the National College Athlete Honor Society.
To earn a place in this honor society, a student-athlete must be at least a junior, have a 3.40 cumulative grade point average (GPA) on a 4.00 scale, and have an endorsement from his or her respective head coach. The nominees are then screened by a selection committee.
The inductees are baseball pitcher Michael Bailey (Irmo, S.C.), women’s volleyball players Kimberly Covil (Castle Hayne, N.C.) and Jen Melahn (Skokie, Ill.), women’s cross country runner Anne Gioscia (Jefferson City, Tenn.), women’s tennis player Maria Ave-Lallemant (Summerville, S.C.), women’s soccer players Katie Roberts (Frederick, Md.) and Jessica Skarzinski (Charles Town, W.V.), men’s soccer player Justin Smith (Pickerington, Ohio), and men’s tennis player Cleve Calcutt (Pamplico, S.C.).
Chi Alpha Sigma was founded in May 1996 by DePauw University head football coach Nick Mourouzis. The organization currently has 61 chapters in 23 states. Francis Marion has the only chapter in South Carolina.
Over the past three years, 24 different FMU student-athletes have earned this honor.
Chi Alpha Sigma's purposes are: to encourage and reward high academic scholarship of college athletes at four-year accredited institutions; to recognize outstanding academic achievement by intercollegiate varsity letterwinners; to encourage good citizenship, moral character, and friendship among the high academic achievers in college athletics; to recognize and honor the individual athlete, his/her team, sport, athletic department, and college or university; and to mentor and to provide leadership to other athletes.