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Bat Cats use up all nine lives
Great Bend Bat Cat JoJo Nieves lays down a perfect bunt Tuesday with catcher Cole Pendley and umpire Jeff Spisak watching. - photo by JIM MISUNAS Great Bend Tribune


WICHITA – How many lives does a Great Bend Bat Cat have?

How about nine?

The Bat Cats delivered ninth-inning magic with 11 runs to rally past Dallas (Texas) Kraken 17-8 in Tuesday's wild NBC pool play game at Wichita State.

When Bat Cat reliever Jake Wellington yielded three home runs on three pitches, the Kraken led 7-4 after seven innings. Kraken batters Josh Livingston, Case Pettis and Preston Curtis drilled seventh-inning homers, each one longer than the last one.

"That's the fastest four runs I've seen," said Bat Cats coach Jonathan Mariani. "That wasn't going well. But pitcher George Austin stopped the bleeding."

Great Bend somehow pulled off the wildest comeback in Bat Cat history.

Jayden Hill (Arkansas State) carved his place in Bat Cat history with a bases-clearing pinch-hit double that ignited the 11-run ninth inning for a 12-8 lead.

"Hill provided more pop with the stick, and he came through in a big way," Mariani said. 

Tyler Cowan scored on a wild pitch and Brady Kreutzer and Kade Snodgrass drew bases-loaded walks for a 9-8 lead. Marshall Hale and Kade Snodgrass both delivered 2-run singles as Great Bend scored 11 runs on three hits. Great Bend drew nine walks in the ninth inning. 

Great Bend showed superb plate discipline by drawing 13 walks in the final two innings.

"Everybody put together good at-bats. It was a fun game," Mariani said. "It doesn't matter which guys we're playing. The guys we've picked up have done their job." 

Down 7-4, JoJo Nieves and Robby Bolin forced home runs on bases-loaded eighth-inning walks.

Great Bend right fielder Brady Kreutzer delivered the game’s signature defensive play when he threw out Josh Livingston at home to keep Great Bend within 8-6 heading to the ninth inning.

"Brady provided an underrated defensive play," Mariani said. "He gave us a chance to stick around."

Bat Cat relievers Anthony Treto, Paco Hernandez and Tanner Vaughn combined for four shutout innings for a 4-3 lead after six innings. Coleson Syring struck out three batters in two innings to earn the victory.

The Bat Cats (29-12) play the Seattle Blackfins (20-14) at 9 p.m. Thursday at Wichita State in bracket play.

GB Bat Cats 003 100 02(11) – 17 11 0

Dallas Kraken 030 000 410 – 8 11 1

Lanik, Treto (3), Hernandez (5), Vaughn (6), Wellington (7), Austin (7), Syring (8) and Hale. Nelson, Manasla (5), Roberts (8), Rowley (9), Johnston (9), Pettis (9), Gonzalez (9) and Mitchell. W—Syring, 1-0. L—Johnston.  2B—GB—Ural, Hill. 3B—GB—Cowan. HR—DK—Livingston, Pettis, Curtis.



Lonestar, Texas 19, Arlington Baptist 3

Denver Cougars 6, Liberal 5

Dallas Kraken, Texas 9,  Hays Larks 2

Bat Cats 17, Seattle Blackfins 6


Kansas Cannons (27-13) vs. Dallas Kraken (13-7)

Hutchinson Monarchs (23-17) vs. Lonestar, Texas

Santa Barbara (32-10) vs. Denver Cougars (20-19)

Seattle Studs (21-20) vs. Bat Cats (30-12)

POOL A (x-top 3 qualify)—x-Kansas Cannons (2-1, 18-4); x-Lonestar, Texas (2-1, 9-3); x-Denver Cougars (2-1, 14-9); Sedgwick County Blues (0-3); THURSDAY—Cannons 8, Denver Cougars 1; Lonestar, Texas 5, Sedgwick County Blues 0; SATURDAY—Denver Cougars 11, Sedgwick County 0; Lonestar 3, Kansas Cannons 1; MONDAY—Denver Cougars 2, Lonestar, Texas 1; Kansas Cannons 9, Sedgwick County Blues 0

POOL C (x-top 3 qualify)—x-Seattle Studs (2-1, 20-12); x-Liberal (2-1, 27-18); x-Arlington Baptist (1-2, 18-24); D-Bat Collegiate (1-2, 14-25); THURSDAY—Arlington Baptist, Texas 9, D-Bat Collegiate 5; Seattle Studs 10, Liberal 2; SATURDAY—Liberal 12, D-Bat Collegiate 4; Seattle Studs 6, Arlington Baptist 5; MONDAY—D-Bat Collegiate 5, Seattle 4; Liberal 13, Arlington Baptist 3

POOL B (x-top 3 qualify)—x-Santa Barbara (3-0, 27-8); x-Great Bend Bat Cats (2-1, 26-15); x-Dallas, Kraken, Texas (1-2, 18-36); Tulsa, Okla (0-3, 15-26); Lonestar Kraken, Texas 0; FRIDAY—Bat Cats 4, Tulsa 2; Santa Barbara 11, Lonestar 0; SUNDAY—Santa Barbara 5, Great Bend 4; Lonestar Kraken 11, Tulsa 9; TUESDAY—Santa Barbara 11,. Tulsa 4; Great Bend 17, Dallas Kraken 8

POOL D (x-top 3 qualify)—x-Hutchinson Monarchs (3-0, 30-16), x-Hays Larks (2-1, 25-10); x-Seattle Blackfins (1-2, 9-30), Round Rock, Texas (0-3, 14-21), FRIDAY—Seattle Blackfins 6, Round Rock, Texas 2; Hutchinson 6, Hays 4, 11 innings; SUNDAY—Hays 5, Round Rock 2; Hutchinson Monarchs 12, Seattle Blackfins 1; TUESDAY—Hutchinson 12, Round Rock, Texas 11; Hays 16, Seattle Blackfins 3