GEORGIA STATE (3-9) vs. EAST TENNESSEE STATE (9-3)

At the GSU Baseball Complex

Friday, 4 p.m.

Saturday, 2 p.m.

Sunday, 1 p.m.

 

COVERAGE:

Friday: Live video (subscription) on PantherVision, via GeorgiaStateSports.com, GSU mobile app.

Sunday: Free live audio on PantherVision, via GeorgiaStateSports.com, GSU mobile app.

 

PROBABLE PITCHERS (GSU vs. ETSU)

Friday:  GSU Jr. RHP Hunter Gaddis (0-1, 6.38) vs. ETSU RHP Micah Kaczor (2-0, 0.96)

Saturday: GSU Sr. RHP Jake Rogers (1-1, 5.65) vs. ETSU RHP Landon Knack (2-0, 1.50)

Sunday:  GSU So. RHP Trey Horton (0-1, 4.30) vs. ETSU RHP Daniel Sweeney (2-0, 2.76)

 

LEADING OFF

>Georgia State plays its final non-conference weekend series as the Panthers host ETSU for three games, Friday through Sunday at the GSU Baseball Complex. This series opens a five-game homestand that will conclude next Wednesday with a visit from No. 9 Georgia.

>ETSU leads the series 2-0, but both of those games were back in 1981. The Buccaneers are off to a 9-4 start but are coming off a 12-4 loss at No. 1-ranked Vanderbilt on Wednesday.

>Sophomore infielder Griffin Cheney ranks sixth in the Sun Belt with a .395 batting average. He also leads the team with a .455 on-base percentage and 10 runs scored.

>Senior first baseman Jake Corso is hitting .304 while leading the Panthers in RBI (10) and in extra-base hits (7), including five doubles, one triple and one home run.

>Junior designated hitter Elian Merejo is the team’s top newcomer, hitting .326 with a team-leading three homers and 10 RBI.

>Preseason All-America and Preseason Sun Belt Conference Pitcher of the Year Hunter Gaddis takes the mound for the Panthers on Friday nights. After strong starts but no decision in his first two outings of the season, he looks to bounce back from a subpar outing last Friday against Samford.

>Gaddis, the junior right-hander, ranks seventh in GSU history with 183 career strikeouts and tied for 10th with 13 career victories. That includes a 9-4 record and a 2.95 ERA in 2018, when he tied for the Sun Belt lead in victories while ranking second in the league in innings pitched (100.2), third in strikeouts (98) and fourth in ERA.

>Gaddis is one of three Panthers named to the Preseason All-Sun Belt team. Senior Brandon Bell, GSU’s top returning hitter and starting right fielder who also plays third base and pitches, was named as a utility player. Sophomore Ryan Glass was selected as the DH after earning second-team all-conference honors there in 2018, when he belted seven homers; he is now starting at third base.

>Freshmen reliever Ryan Watson earned a save and a victory in his first two appearances in a Panther uniform. Against UIC, he pitched two perfect innings with three strikeouts for the save, then at Charleston Southern, he finished  the game with two scoreless inning to earn the win. 

>To win its series at Charleston Southern (Feb. 22-23), the Panthers rallied from a 4-1 deficit after six innings and a 6-4 deficit after eight for a 7-6 victory in the deciding game. In the ninth, GSU loaded the bases on a hit by pitch and singles by Griffin Cheney and Brandon Bell. Jake Corso pulled GSU within one with a sacrifice fly, and then Elian Merejo laced a single off the pitcher that deflected into left field to bring home two runs. Freshman Ryan Watson finished the game with two scoreless innings to earn the win.

>Now in his 13th season as the Georgia State head coach, Greg Frady is the Panthers’ career victory leader with 358 in Atlanta as part of his 545 career wins in his 19th season.