ATLANTA - Roger Kincaid, head coach of the Georgia State softball team, released the Panthers' 2019 schedule on Wednesday which features a trip to Hawaii, home games against Georgia Tech and Auburn, and road contests at Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina.
"When we are building the schedule, we want to find strong opponents that will help prepare us for a run at the Sun Belt Championship," Kincaid said. "We want to face quality opponents not only to see where we measure but also to show off our program and the talent we have here at Georgia State. Having teams like Auburn to come play us at our complex is an exciting opportunity to showcase our program."
The Panthers will play a total of 20 home games in 2019. The home opener will be March 1 against Western Carolina as GSU hosts the I-75 Challenge along with Georgia Tech and Kennesaw State.
Georgia State's first tournament of the season is an exciting one. The Panthers will make the journey to Hawaii to play five games at the Hawaii Paradise Classic, facing off against the host Rainbow Warriors and Pac-12 foe UCLA among others. The Feb. 7-9 tournament will be the softball program's first tournament outside of the contiguous United States.
"This is a great trip that we are really looking forward to," Kincaid said. "We will be playing against some good teams out there so while we want to enjoy the trip, it's still a business trip and we have work to do while we're there."
The Panthers return to Georgia to visit Georgia Tech on Feb. 13 before taking part in the Samford Bulldog Invitational Feb. 15-17 in Birmingham, Ala.
After four games in Tampa at the USF Classic, GSU finally gets to play its first home game of the season.
After hosting Western Carolina, Fordham, and Hofstra in the I-75 Challenge, the Panthers host Kennesaw State on March 6 before opening up conference play at Coastal Carolina on March 8.
New to the Sun Belt this season is the transition from a two-day series to a three-day series. Once in conference play, GSU will now play games on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday instead of the previous Saturday (DH) -Sunday format.
As part of league play, GSU will host UT Arlington, Appalachian State, South Alabama, and ULM.
GSU will play several intriguing midweek contests during Sun Belt play. GSU hosts Auburn on March 13 and Georgia Tech on April
Georgia State will close out the regular season at rival Georgia Southern before heading to San Marcos, Texas for the Sun Belt Championships May 8-11.
Admission to all games at the Bob Heck Softball Complex is free. The stadium is located at 2401 Wildcat Rd. in Dekalb County.