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Kansas survives C. Michigan -9/21/2014, 11:36 AM

FHSU defense carries Tigers to win over Lindenwood -9/21/2014, 3:10 AM

Tiger women win in 2OT -9/21/2014, 7:27 PM

Tigers start 1-1 at home -9/21/2014, 7:27 PM

Tiger duo competes at ITA regional -9/21/2014, 7:27 PM

Area prep football roundup, Sept. 19 -9/21/2014, 7:27 PM

TMP plays better, comes up short at Smith Center -9/20/2014, 3:03 PM

Prep FB scores, Sept. 19 -9/19/2014, 10:36 PM

Hays High outlasts Liberal -9/19/2014, 7:22 PM

HHS girls third on home course -9/19/2014, 11:15 AM

HHS soccer drops match to Dodge City -9/19/2014, 10:21 AM

FHSU soccer falls to NSU -9/19/2014, 10:58 AM

Tigers look for first home win -9/19/2014, 10:59 AM

TMP soccer rolls past Buhler -9/19/2014, 11:00 AM

TMP girls' golf second in Larned -9/19/2014, 11:00 AM

Auburn squeaks past K-State in Manhattan -9/19/2014, 11:02 AM

HHS volleyball loses twice in Garden City -9/19/2014, 11:03 AM

HHS tennis fifth in Dodge -9/19/2014, 11:03 AM

FHSU tennis tops Kansas Wesleyan -9/18/2014, 10:30 AM

Royals set up key series with Detroit -9/18/2014, 10:29 AM

Monarchs face first road test, Redmen -9/18/2014, 10:14 AM

Big game for 'Cats -9/18/2014, 10:13 AM

Hays High gets Liberal for home opener -9/18/2014, 10:14 AM

Royals fall to Chicago -9/17/2014, 10:59 AM

Tigers' Herman named MIAA Golfer of the Week -9/17/2014, 10:58 AM

Tuesday prep volleyball scores -9/17/2014, 10:52 AM

KVA volleyball rankings, Sept. 17 -9/17/2014, 10:50 AM

TMP suffers second loss to Garden City -9/17/2014, 10:46 AM

Hays High volleyball moves to 10-0 -9/17/2014, 10:47 AM

Tiger volleyball takes No. 4 UNK to five sets -9/17/2014, 10:53 AM

Tigers ride momentum of first win -9/17/2014, 10:45 AM

O'Brien earns MIAA weekly honor -9/16/2014, 10:24 AM

Tigers' Bradley named MIAA Specialist of the Week -9/16/2014, 10:24 AM

Hype continues to grow for K-State, Auburn -9/16/2014, 10:24 AM

HHS soccer plays to draw -9/16/2014, 10:24 AM

Parkey's FG lifts Philadelphia in Indianapolis -9/16/2014, 10:24 AM

Royals walk off with win -9/16/2014, 10:13 AM

Peterson to play Sunday -9/16/2014, 10:13 AM

Royals slammed by Red Sox -9/15/2014, 4:42 PM

Keselowski wins at Chicagoland -9/15/2014, 4:42 PM

KSU defense ready for test -9/15/2014, 4:42 PM

Broncos escape Chiefs -9/15/2014, 4:42 PM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

Boys

Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

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SPOTLIGHT
Gottschalk playing well in new position

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Gottschalk playing well in new position

Published on -4/24/2013, 9:52 AM

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By KLINT SPILLER

kspiller@dailynews.net

It's not easy playing catcher.

Baseball catchers are involved in every play, more so than any other player on the field. One passed ball out of 150 pitches could lead to a loss.

Many catchers have practiced the position since childhood, but not Thomas More Prep-Marian junior Jordan Gottschalk. He just recently stepped into the position.

As a sophomore, Gottschalk watched then-senior Taylor Pfeifer handle the catching duties on varsity, but realized there would be a void once he graduated. The junior varsity had only one player with catching experience, classmate Cameron Brin, and he also was one of the JV's top pitchers and infielders.

Gottschalk, who played first base most of his life, thought he could handle the catching duties and began learning the position last summer with a local team, the Hays Drive.

"I told Coach I want (Brin) to pitch, so I'll catch," Gottschalk said, recalling his conversation with his summer league coach. "I know I've never done it before but I'll try, and I loved it."

This spring, it's difficult to tell Gottschalk has less than a year of catching experience. On Friday against Goodland, Gottschalk had just one passed ball, and this season, he has no errors.

"A lot of people take that for granted when he blocks pitches in the dirt, but really, when we look at what's happened, there's hardly been any passed balls," TMP coach Brian Schumacher said.

Gottschalk said it was tricky at first, especially blocking fastballs. The only area he said he's still struggling with is his throw to second.

"I can be a little wild," Gottschalk said.

Still, Schumacher said it is an impressive transition to make.

"It takes a special breed to catch," Schumacher said.

"That's the thing. A lot of guys aren't comfortable behind the plate.

"Kids are swinging. There's foul balls coming off the bat and hitting you. He's just relaxed back there and does a really nice job."

The position switch isn't new at TMP, though. Pfeifer also had switched positions to behind the plate heading into his sophomore year when he saw an upcoming void.

"There's a lot of similarities to what Jordan's doing," Schumacher said.

Gottschalk not only has played well on defense, but he's also the team's top power hitter.

Gottschalk is hitting .278 with a .417 slugging percentage, the best on the team for the 4-4 Monarchs. He leads his squad with five doubles and is tied for a team-high six RBIs. However, he's had his struggles as well. He leads the squad in strikeouts with 11 in 36 at bats.

"I try too hard sometimes," said Gottschalk, who is in uncharted territory. He's never been a regular varsity player, and he's never played a full spring as catcher, either.

"He's picked up the little quirks of the game," said second baseman Grant Romme, Gottschalk's classmate, "and he's gotten quite a bit better at it since the first time he started catching."

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