BY JIM MISUAS
WICHITA – Great Bend Bat Cat Grant Nottlemann enjoyed a record-breaking NBC World Series.
Nottlemann (Lincoln. Neb.) capped a 12-for-16 World Series batting performance (.750) and a shocking 21-for-25 on-base percentage of .840. Nottlemann reached base 12 consecutive times in his final three NBC games.
The Barton Community College catcher delivered three singles and a walk in a hard-luck 6-1 elimination loss to the Seattle Studs Friday. Nottlemann was flawless defensively when he threw out Seattle's Akiyoshi Buckson and Makana Murashige on back-to-back attempted steals.
"Summer was a struggle at times, but NBC ended with a good feeling. The longer we went, the looser I played," Nottlemann said. "Pitchers will try and beat you with their best stuff. I kept expecting fastballs, and put the baseball in play."
He showed superb plate discipline by drawing eight walks along with a hit-by-pitch.
"It was big time to help my team," Nottlemann said.
Great Bend were unlucky all night. The Bat Cats hit into a trio of double plays, none tougher than Jeron Cotton’s groundball with the bases loaded in the second inning.
Even when the Bat Cats scored their lone run, they earned no breaks. Jackson Webster’s hard shot was headed for a base hit, but it bounced off Seattle pitcher Jacob Bradley to second baseman Makana Murashige for a force out. Tyler Cowan scored on Webster’s groundball.
Marshall Hale’s line drive off reliever Brice Foster would’ve made the score 6-4. But Seattle centerfielder Noah Fields delivered a spectacular diving catch to prevent a bases-loaded extra-base hit.
Seattle's Charlie Larson singled home Fields in a 2-run second inning. Larson scored on an error. Landon Riker ripped a 2-run fourth-inning homer off Kevin Schoneboom that scored Ben Schnurman. Larson singled home Fields and Riker scored on an error for a 6-0 lead after five innings.
The Bat Cats (30-12) finish with a fifth-place NBC tie.
Seattle Studs 020 220 000 – 6 12 0
GB Bat Cats 000 000 001 – 1 6 3
Bradley, Foster and Klemp. Schoneboom, Winkler (5), Austin (9) and Nottlemann. W—Bradley. L—Schoneboom. HR—S—Riker.
2023 NBC WORLD SERIES, WICHITA
Lonestar, Texas 19, Arlington Baptist 3
Denver Cougars 6, Liberal 5
Dallas Kraken, Texas 9, Hays Larks 2
Bat Cats 17, Seattle Blackfins 6
Dallas Kraken 6, Kansas Cannons 3
Hutchinson Monarchs 11, Lonestar, Texas 1
Santa Barbara 3, Denver Cougars 0
Seattle Studs 6, Bat Cats 1
Hutchinson Monarchs 17, Dallas Kraken 0
Santa Barbara 5, Seattle Studs 0
Hutchinson Monarchs 6, Santa Barbara 3
Hutchinson Monarchs (26-17); Santa Barbara (34-11)