Gazette Preps is keeping up with athletes representing the Pikes Peak region at contests in much warmer weather. Here's what St. Mary's senior outfielder and pitcher Brad Fanelli had to say Tuesday.

For Brad Fanelli of St. Mary's, the desert heat of Scottsdale, Ariz., feels just like home.

In a way, it is.

"My dad has a second home down here, so I come down here a lot with my sister, so I'm kind of used to it," said the Pirates outfielder and pitcher not long after his team scored a 13-2 victory over Clatskanie, Ore., Tuesday. "Everyone else on the team thinks it's pretty hot, but I don't think it's too bad."

In each of his seasons wearing a Pirates uniform, Fanelli got to take part in a spring-break journey to Scottsdale. He just can't believe his high school days are almost over.

"The first part of this semester was crazy long, just waiting to get down here and play ball," Fanelli said. "Knowing this would be my last time, I was so excited to get down here and make the most of it."

The team enjoyed boating at nearby Bartlett Lake for most of Sunday, then took part in a St. Mary's tradition after the first practice by hitting a regional institution so longed for by many food enthusiasts in the Pikes Peak region: In-N-Out Burger.

On Tuesday, the team hoped to attend the latest version of the Arizona State-Arizona college baseball rivalry, while later planning to tour the nearby spring training facilities of the Rockies and Diamondbacks.

St. Mary's plays its second and final game of the trip on Wednesday against a team from British Columbia.

"These trips are great for team chemistry," Fanelli said. "We all hang out at the hotel or go swimming or play basketball. That time together helps us grow together as a team. When we get back home, we know what we're playing for."