Jeff Holland has been around the game for a long time and he isn’t sure what to make of the start the Mesquite baseball club has had thus far.
“I’ve seen some things last few weeks that I haven’t seen in 30-plus years of baseball,” Holland said Saturday on the final day of the 14th annual Desert Vista tournament. “Holy moly. You learn something every day.”
What Holland learned Saturday was that his young team has some resiliency after the Wildcats came back to beat Desert Vista, 4-3.
Mesquite (5-2) gave up a 2-0 lead when the Thunder (2-3) scored twice in the bottom of the fifth and added another in the bottom of the sixth on Garrison Schwartz’s RBI single to drive in Aaron Modi, who singled and stole second before scoring.
The Wildcats, who beat Mountain View 8-6 earlier in the day and went 3-2 in the tournament, plated two in the top of the seventh on double by Parker Holland, a RBI single by Alex Murrieta and a RBI double by Cole Valletta, who lost a ball in the sun in the fifth inning in left field that allowed the Thunder to get back into the game.
“We’re playing a lot of underclassman,” Coach Holland said. “It’s not an excuse. We have to go out and play the game. They are not going to lay down for us. We have to grow each game.”
The win went to James Harrington, who relived George Valenzuela after five quality innings. The loss went to reliever Diego Leal, who came in with one out in the seventh to replace starter Sean McGuire.
The Thunder had a difficult day as they lost, 4-3, in the late stages to Hamilton to start the day. Desert Vista has shown it can play with some of the areas best, but haven’t finished it.
“We’ve done some good things on the mound and played some pretty good defense,” Thunder coach Stan Luketich said. “Overall, we have played good baseball. You have to execute late in games and we haven’t done that yet.”