ATLANTA – The Georgia State softball team edged Indiana 4-3 and powered past ETSU 11-5 on the final day of the Panther Invitational at Bob Heck Field on Sunday, Feb. 16. The Panthers finished the tournament 3-1 and are 4-1 overall this season.

Game 1

Lauren Coleman hit her third homer of the season to lead Georgia State to a 4-3 win over Indiana on the second day of the Panther Invitational.

After a scoreless first inning, the Hoosiers grabbed a 2-0 lead in the top of the second. CaraMia Tsirigos open the inning with a single to right center before Jenna Abraham hit a two-run homer to left.

Georgia State responded with a single run in the bottom of the third to cut Indiana’s lead to 2-1. Mandy Blackwell blasted her first career home run over the centerfielder’s head to put the Panthers on the board.

GSU’s starting pitcher Kaitlyn Medlam stuck out the side in the top of the fourth before the Panthers grabbed the lead in the bottom of the frame. Morgan Brown singled through the left side to open the inning. After a Callie Alford walk, Coleman hit a three-run, line-drive home run to right center to give Georgia State a 4-2 lead.

Neither team scored in the fifth, but Indiana plated a run in the top of the sixth to make it a 4-3 game. GSU went three up and three down in the bottom of the sixth before Medlam retired the side in the top of the seventh to secure the 4-3 victory.

Kaitlyn Medlam improved to 2-0 after pitching all seven innings for the win. She allowed six hits, gave up three runs, two earned and stuck out six. Six Panthers hit safely in the game and Lauren Coleman led the way with three RBI.

Indiana’s Meaghan Murphy falls to 0-4 on the season after the loss. Jenna Abraham finished with one hit, one run scored and two RBI to lead the Hoosiers.

Game 2

Georgia State opened the game with eight runs in the top of the first inning en route to an 11-5 victory over ETSU in the final game of the Panther Invitational.

Taylor Anderson opened the game with a single up the middle, advanced to second on an error by the catcher and scored on Morgan Brown’s single. Lauren Coleman singled and Callie Alford drew a walk to load the bases. Then, Megan Litumbe stepped to the plate and blasted a grand slam to straight away center to give GSU a 5-0 lead.

After two outs, Mandy Blackwell walked and Mallory Koepke singled before Anderson stepped to the plate for the second time in the first inning. Anderson then hit a three-run home run to left center to give the Panthers an 8-0 advantage.

ETSU was  held scoreless in the bottom of the first and GSU went three up and three down in the top of the second. Then, the Buccaneers scored five runs in the bottom of the second to cut the Panther lead to 8-5.

After a scoreless third inning, Georgia State extended their lead with one run in the top of the fourth. Alford drew a leadoff walk, advanced to second on a past ball and moved to third on Megan Litumbe’s single. MeQuilla Franklin drove in Alford with a double down the right field line after a double play.

The Panthers retired the side in the bottom of the fourth, and then scored two more runs to extend their lead to 11-5. Koepke opened the frame with a single before Morgan Brown reached on a fielder’s choice. Then Coleman hit a double off the centerfield wall to plate both runs.

Relief pitcher Taylor Thorpe and the Panther defense then retired the side in the bottom of the sixth and seventh to clinch the 11-5 victory.

Thorpe improves to 2-1 this season after pitching six innings in relief. She allowed two hits and two runs while striking out four. Taylor Anderson went 4-for-5, drove in three runs and scored twice. Megan Litumbe finished with three hits and four RBI on a grand slam.

Georgia State returns to the field Friday, Feb. 21 to take on Stony Brook at 3 p.m. at Georgia Tech as part of the Georgia Tech – Kennesaw State Invitational.