China Spring Liberty Hill

China Spring’s Cayden Johnson claps his hands after scoring on a RBI by teammate Brett Cain against Liberty Hill.

Staff photo — Rod Aydelotte, file

Old pals will meet one more time for a rather significant prize.

Robinson (29-2) and China Spring (21-11-2) will play a one-game playoff for the Region III-4A baseball title at 7 p.m. Thursday at Baylor Ballpark. The third-ranked Rockets swept the season series over the Cougars during district play, picking up an 8-5 win at China Spring and a 2-1 victory in Robinson.

But the teams will wipe the slate clean and face off again for a berth in next week’s UIL State Baseball Tournament. That was the exact same position in which the schools found themselves in 2012, when Robinson won a 2-0 game at Mary Hardin-Baylor to advance on to state.

In last week’s regional semis, Robinson won a one-game playoff over West Orange-Stark, 4-2. Meanwhile, the Cougars survived a wild three-game series with Bridge City, taking the finale, 10-9, thanks to Levi Bass’s walk-off single in the seventh.

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