Desert Vista's baseball team won't be advancing in the 5A-I playoffs this season, but the Thunder did keep one streak going.

The Thunder hadn't missed making a playoff appearance since 2003, but appeared to be out of the running this season until they got hot at the end of the season and put together a seven-game winning streak.

That put Desert Vista, which had been as far down the ladder as the 23rd seed, into the 16th and final spot in the playoffs.

But an opening round loss on the road to top ranked Gilbert Desert Ridge put the Thunder in the loser's bracket where they fell to Mountain Ridge, 8-4, in Glendale on Tuesday afternoon.

"I'm proud of our kids for giving us a chance to get into the playoffs," Desert Vista coach Stan Luketich said. "That was a hell of a run, to have to win six region games at the end and get in."

The Thunder jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first inning, but Jonathan Meyer ripped a grand slam homer in the Mountain Lions' five-run first inning.

Desert Vista responded with two runs in the second inning.

Hunter Rodriguez and Jaycob Brugman singled and with two out, Shaun Chase singled to score Rodriguez.

Pat Hickey doubled to left-center to score Brugman but Chase had to stop at third base.

Desert Vista was able to get one runner in scoring position the final five innings.

"We picked a bad day to play bad," Luketich said. "They played better and deserved to win. But this was a great senior bunch, and they played with great heart. It was blast to coach them."

Desert Vista finished the season with a 16-16 record.

The ninth-seeded Mountain Lions lost to Salpointe, 7-1, in the opening round last weekend.


Richard Smith of the Glendale-Peoria Today contributed to this report.


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