Sometimes, a high school baseball team has a little bit more of what it takes to win on a given weekend.
That was the case for Roosevelt in Saturday's Class 4A regional tournament.
The Roughriders had just a little bit more pitching and a little bit more timely hitting as they overcame host Palisade 5-1 in the regional championship game.
Bulldogs starter Brett Wagner pitched out of jams in each of the first three innings, stranding five Roosevelt base runners in scoring position.
It was the Roughriders' No. 9 hitter, Trent Beall, who broke a 1-1 stalemate with a solo home run to open the fourth inning. Roosevelt added another run in the fourth, then tacked on two more in the fifth for insurance.
As the Roughriders' bats broke out, Palisade struggled against both Roosevelt pitchers. Starter Brandin Obrecht allowed only one hit after the first inning, striking out seven in five innings.
Palisade coach Nate Porter complimented both Obrecht and Tyler Cook, who relieved in the sixth inning, on the velocity of their pitches. Porter said the Bulldogs had only faced three or four pitchers all season who threw the baseball that hard.
"It just got away a little bit," Porter said, despite a yeoman's effort from Wagner and Stevenson Reynolds on the mound.
The Bulldogs advanced to the regional final with an interesting 9-3 victory over Montrose.
The Indians had a chance to take command early, but left two runners stranded in the second inning and the bases loaded in the third without scoring a run.
No. 9 hitter Nathan Bollinger staked Palisade to a 2-0 lead with a two-run double in the second.
Trailing 5-0 in the top of the fifth, Montrose scored three times, taking advantage to three hit batsmen by Palisade starter Sebo Campbell, who gave way to Reynolds with one out and the bases loaded. On Reynolds' first pitch, Montrose attempted to steal home but Dustin Boone was tagged out. Justin Welch attempted to steal third on the delay, but he was thrown out to end the inning and short-circuit Montrose's best chance to rally.
With only five seniors graduating, Palisade will have a chance to build on a successful season.
"They play the game right," Porter said of his younger players. "We're setting the foundation for a really good culture."
Wagner, one of the five senior leaders, agreed.
"The young guys know they have to work hard to have a good season," Wagner said.