The Estevan bantam Haulers and peewee Tornados are making no bones about their expectations this weekend.
With both teams hosting their respective bantam AA and peewee AA baseball provincials at Cactus Park, the goal is victory.
The Haulers, who finished atop the Regina Baseball AAA league, enter the tournament as a favourite and are well-poised to meet their goal.
"The important thing is definitely to play good defence and get guys out before (the Estevan pitchers) rack up their (pitch count). And we need run support, so we don't have to leave key guys in longer. It's getting on base, scoring runs and making sure we play good defence," said Haulers head coach Kent Phillips.
The Haulers are familiar with league opponents Yorkton, Carlyle and Swift Current. The unknowns in the field are Melfort and Martensville.
Pool A will consist of Estevan, Yorkton and Martensville, with Pool B featuring Carlyle, Swift Current and Melfort.
"I know Melfort's a very, very good hitting team. We saw them in the Regina tournament. Martensville, I don't know anything about them," said Phillips.
The Haulers will play in the tournament's first game Friday at 12:30 p.m. against Yorkton. The opening ceremonies are at 6:30.
On Saturday, the Haulers play Martensville at 10 a.m. to close out the round-robin.
The playoffs start that night, with the second- and third-place teams in each pool facing off in a crossover format in the quarter-finals. On Sunday morning, the winners of those games play the pool winners in the semis, followed by the provincial championship game at 1:30 p.m.
"Anything that's not winning, we'll be disappointed," said Phillips.
"I just think with the year we had and the players we have, I'll probably have more expectations to win than I've ever had in 10 or 11 years coaching."
The Tornados, meanwhile, go in with the same goal despite not being considered favourites. That distinction could go to the Weyburn Beavers, who were first in the Regina AAA league at 17-3, or perhaps the Lloydminster Twins, the defending Western Canadian peewee AA champs.
"A few of the teams might take us a little lightly," said Tornados head coach Landon Lafrentz. "I have high expectations. I plan on winning it, that's just how I am, and I know the boys plan on winning it. It's been our goal since Day 1 and it's what we've been working toward all year."
The Tornados are in Pool A with Swift Current, Martensville and Muenster. Pool B is comprised of Weyburn, Moose Jaw, Lloydminster and Yorkton.
Estevan starts the weekend off Friday at noon when they play Swift Current. The opening ceremonies are at 7 p.m.
Their second game is Saturday at 9:30 a.m. against Martensville, and they wrap up the round-robin at 3 p.m. against Muenster.
The peewee playoff format sees only the top two teams in each pool advance in a crossover format, with the two semifinal winners meeting in Sunday's gold-medal game at 1:30 p.m. The final will be pushed back to 3:30 if a tie-breaker is needed.
Lafrentz said that with strict pitch count rules and not much time between games, saving the resources on the mound will be important.
"Conserving pitching's key. With the pitch count, if you've only got one kid that's a really good pitcher, it's tough. Hopefully that'll be the downfall of some teams, whereas we have a pretty strong pitching staff all the way through," he said.