Panthers throttle Purdue-Fort Wayne on Opening Day

It didn’t take too long into the 2022 season for Georgia State’s high-powered offense to get rolling. All nine starters reached base at least once in the Panthers’ 13-2 Opening Day victory over Purdue-Fort Wayne. 

After a quiet first inning, the bottom of the second started with a Josh Smith single and Will Mize’s first of two doubles on the afternoon. Deangelo Abboud walked to load the bases, then Kyle Hilton singled to get the Panthers on the board with a 2-0 lead.

Consecutive wild pitches scored Abboud and Hilton, the first two of six wild pitches the Mastodons had. After Kyle Riesselman’s single, a passed ball, and a strikeout, Riesselman took third on another passed ball then scored on catcher Cade Fitzpatrick’s throwing error to make it 5-0.

Josh Smith blasted the Panthers’ first home run of the 2022 campaign with a 383-foot bomb in the third to extend the lead to 6-0.

Panthers’ starter Brandon Kaminer threw four hitless innings to start the game but ran into trouble in the fifth, allowing two walks and a single to Jarrett Bickel. 

Chad Treadway entered the game, and after allowing an RBI single, struck out consecutive hitters to end the frame. Catcher Kyle Hilton helped with his second pick off of the afternoon to complete a “strike ’em out, throw ’em out” double play.

Treadway earned the win for the Panthers after striking out four of the seven batters he faced in relief.

Griffin Cheney added a home run in the bottom of the fifth before the Panthers piled on six more runs in the final three innings. Duncan Lutz earned the save, striking out three in as many frames.

The Panthers and Mastodons battle twice on Saturday. Sophomore Chandler Dawson will start the first game at 1 p.m. and senior Trey Horton will start the second at 4 p.m.