ATLANTA- The Georgia State baseball team opened official spring practice on Friday as two Panthers were named to the Colonial Athletic Association all-preseason team and two more earned honorable mention selections.

Senior infielder Brandon Williams was named the all-CAA preseason team's third baseman Friday after racking up all-conference first team honors a season ago. The Marietta, Ga., product batted .342 on the year with 13 doubles and 36 RBIs. He stands in the top 10 of six different school career categories, including sixth in hits with 211.

Junior infielder Drew Shields was named the all-CAA team's designated hitter, where he was named to the all-conference second team after a strong 2011 year. He hit .321 with 20 RBIs and 35 runs scored in his first season after transferring from Darton College last year.

Meanwhile, senior right-handers Jake Dyer and Justin Malone earned all-CAA preseason honorable mention status for the upcoming year.

Dyer enters 2012 as a NCBWA Preseason All-American after leading the Panthers last year out of the bullpen with eight saves and a 1.67 ERA. Malone currently boasts the lowest career ERA in GSU history among qualifying pitchers at 3.79 with a strong 12-2 record over three seasons.

The Panthers opened spring practice Friday with drills and batting practice followed by an intersquad scrimmage.

Three weeks from Friday marks Opening Day, Feb. 17, when the Panthers begin a four-game series against Western Illinois at 4 p.m. at the GSU Baseball Complex.

GSU is receiving votes in the 2012 NCBWA Preseason Division I Poll, released Friday. It is the third straight season the team has received votes in at least one major national poll leading into the year.

The Panthers have been picked to finish fourth in the CAA this year by league head coaches. The team seeks its fourth straight trip to the postseason and second conference title in four years.