CAA Record: 13-8/3rd CAA
Home: 20-7 Away: 11-9 Neutral: 5-3
Final NCAA RPI: 49th out of 291 Division I teams
Final national individual ranking: Walks per game — Lauren Coleman (5th; 0.96)
School Records: Single Season Walks (individual) — Lauren Coleman (53); Single Season Walks (team) 214; Career Home runs (individual) — Paige Nowacki (32; ties record)
NFCA All-Mid-Atlantic Region: Kaitlyn Medlam (First Team, P); Callie Alford (Second Team, C); Jessica Clifton (Second Team, OF)
All-CAA First Team: Jessica Clifton (OF)
All-CAA Second Team: Callie Alford (C), Lauren Coleman, (1B), Kaitlyn Medlam (P)
CAA All-Rookie Team: Taylor Anderson (SS), Katie Worley (P)
CAA Players of the Week: Paige Nowacki (February 19), Ashley Christy (March 26), Jessica Clifton (April 29)
CAA Pitchers of the Week: Kaitlyn Medlam (Feb. 26)
CAA Rookies of the Week: Taylor Anderson (March 5), Katie Worley (April 29)
GSU Blue Carpet Awards: All-Academic Team — Taylor Scarpantonio
ATLANTA — Georgia State softball’s final season in the CAA was full of memorable moments and historic milestones, ranging from a perfect game to a win against a ranked opponent to new school records. In 2014, the storied program will begin its next chapter with a move to the Sun Belt conference.
On April 10 in a game against Georgia Southern, Kaitlyn Medlam recorded just the third perfect game in program history. She stands now as the only individual pitcher to have a perfect game as both previous occasions were combined efforts between two pitchers.
Medlam retired all 18 batters she faced in six innings pitched as the Panthers won the first game of a doubleheader 8-0 in run-rule fashion. The junior from Bethlehem, Ga. struck out five Eagles, all consecutively.
The victory was the most memorable of Medlam’s 18 wins during the season, a number which tied her for the eighth-most wins for a Panther pitcher in a single season. With a total of 42 victories in three years, Medlam already claims the seventh-most wins in a career.
On April 24 in Athens, Ga., the Panthers defeated the No. 23 Georgia Bulldogs by a score of 10-7 in eight innings. It was just the third time GSU had beaten Georgia and first since 2000. The game was also the fifth-ever win over a ranked team in program history and third in the past two years.
Georgia State recorded another road win over a team from the SEC when the Panthers took down Auburn 4-1 at the Tigers’ home field to finish the year 2-2 against teams from the Southeastern Conference.
The Panthers had six players named to All-CAA teams in GSU’s final season in the league. Jessica Clifton made the first team, while Callie Alford, Lauren Coleman and Medlam all earned spots on the second team. Both Taylor Anderson and Katie Worley were named to the CAA All-Rookie team.
Clifton led the team with a .331 batting average and 57 hits. The junior center fielder was also named the CAA Player of the Week on April 31. Clifton, Alford and Coleman started all 55 games for the team during the season. Both Alford and Clifton recorded 15 multi-hit games.
Medlam has now been named to the All-conference second team three consecutive seasons, while Alford has earned a spot on the second team twice. Coleman made the All-CAA first team last season.
Alford, Clifton and Medlam also represented GSU on the NFCA All-Region teams, making it the first time in program history that three Panthers earned All-Region honors. Medlam was named to the Mid-Atlantic Region first team, while both Alford and Clifton earned spots on the second team.
Coleman set a new school record for walks in a single season with 53 bases-on-balls during the year. That mark easily eclipsed the previous record of 43 walks set by former Panther Danielle Roddy in 2007.
The sophomore ranked fifth in the NCAA in walks-per-game, averaging just under a base-on-ball per game. She led the CAA in both walks and on-base percentage. Coleman’s 80 walks in two seasons already place her fourth on the career walks list.
The Panthers also set a new school record for the most walks in a season as a team with 214, which led the CAA in the category. Nine student-athletes finished with double-digits in walks, including 29 by Ashley Christy which is the seventh-most in a season.
Georgia State drew the most walks of any team in the CAA, while finishing second in the league in runs scored, on-base percentage, RBI, home runs, and stolen bases during the regular season.
Paige Nowacki hit 12 home runs during the season to tie the school record in career home runs with 32. The McDonough, Ga. native was named the CAA Player of the Week on February 26 after belting six long balls during the Panther Invitational.
Nowacki would have had the opportunity to perhaps hit a few more homers during the season, but missed more than 20 games with a broken wrist suffered in the Hofstra series. She finished her playing career with the fourth-most RBI in a career with 107 and the sixth-most walks with 73.
Georgia State hit 45 home runs as a team, including grand slams by Alford and Audrey Mason during the season. That mark is the second-most homers ever hit by a Panther team over a season, only two less than the 47 hit in 2006. This also is the first season GSU has had two players hit double-digit homers.
With a team-leading 44 runs batted in, Alford placed herself fifth on the program single-season RBI list, just one RBI more than she had last season as a freshman. She was second in the CAA in RBI. The sophomore also hit 10 home runs, giving her 17 in her career.
Hurlers Medlam and Worley served as the one-two punch for the Panthers in the circle. Both pitchers won more than 15 games in 150+ innings pitched with sub-3.2 ERAs and more than 100 strikeouts.
Anderson got her college career off to a good start by registering a 16-game hitting streak early in the season. That streak stands as the second-longest in program history. The freshman started all but one game at shortstop during the season.
The team also had an impressive streak of 10 consecutive wins towards the end of the season. This winning streak now stands as the second-longest in school history, behind only three streaks of 11 straight wins.
Whitney Phillips ends her playing career with the fifth-most stolen bases after swiping 41 bags over four seasons, including nine in 2013. Christy paced the team with 17 stolen bases, which is eighth in the single-season record books. Georgia State had 78 stolen bases as a team, tied for the second-most ever.
The 282 runs scored by the 2013 Panthers rank as the third-most for a team in the school record books and was the second-most in the CAA. Anderson paced the squad with 42 runs scored, also the second-most in the conference on the year.
In his third season, head coach Roger Kincaid surpassed the 100-win mark during the CAA series against Drexel. Kincaid now has a mark of 105-57 (.648) in charge of the Panthers, including a mark of 41-20 (.683) in CAA play.
The Panthers recorded their seventh consecutive winning season in 2013, finishing with the sixth-best winning percentage (.655) in program history.
GSU missed out on their first CAA tournament, only because the Panthers were ineligible for the conference postseason after announcing a move to the Sun Belt Conference in 2014. The Panthers would have made the four-team tournament as the third-seed.
Five seniors — Audrey Mason, Brenna Morrissey, Paige Nowacki, Whitney Phillips and Carrie Williams — finished their playing careers at Georgia State in 2013 with a record of 147-81 over four seasons, including a 55-27 mark in the CAA.
The 2013 season marked the Panthers’ final season in the CAA after seven successful seasons. Georgia State will compete in the Sun Belt Conference starting in the 2014 season and looks to make an immediate impact on the new league.