The Riverside-Brookfield and Nazareth Academy baseball teams look like two teams going in different directions as both gear up for battle Thursday in the first round of the Nazareth Academy Class AA Regional.

The Bulldogs (17-15) overcame a 6-13 start to win the Suburban Prairie (East) Conference and climb above .500 with a long winning streak. That run was capped last week with a 10-3 win against Lemont.

RB starter Mike Marotta ran into trouble in the first inning when he was touched for three runs on five hits, but settled in to allow only two hits the rest of the way in his complete-game effort.

His teammates would come to his rescue in the second inning by scoring eight runs on 13 hits. From then on out, the Bulldogs would cruise. Joe Kirke led the way with three hits and Nick Ely tripled twice?”both in the second inning?”to drive in four runs for RB.

The Bulldogs will have had a full week off before re-matching with a Roadrunners team they beat 2-1 earlier in the season.

Nazareth has struggled of late, losing five straight going into last weekend and dropping seven of its last eight games to dip to 14-14.