They just can't keep Hurricane and St. Albans apart at the state baseball tournament.
For the third time in the last four state tournaments, the Kanawha Valley rivals will lock up -- this time at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 24 at Appalachian Power Park in the Class AAA semifinals.
The Secondary School Activities Commission released its state tournament seeds and schedule Thursday following the completion of all regional games, and the Redskins (31-1) earned the No. 1 seed in AAA, securing them another date with the Red Dragons (25-7), who were seeded fourth.
Two years ago at the last state tournament, St. Albans blanked Hurricane 5-0 in the championship game. In 2017, it was the same matchup with the same result, as the Red Dragons pounded out an 8-2 win in the AAA finals. Hurricane won the state title in 2018 and dodged yet another showdown with SA when the Red Dragons fell 1-0 to Wheeling Park in the semifinals.
Even this season, they found themselves running into one another at Power Park as Hurricane beat SA 7-0 in the Mountain State Athletic Conference tournament semifinals, also staged at APP.
In the other Class AAA semifinal on Thursday, No. 2 seed Jefferson (27-3) takes on No. 3 Bridgeport (32-3) at approximately 7:30 p.m.
Hurricane and St. Albans are two of just four Kanawha Valley teams to qualify for this year's event, joined by Herbert Hoover (AA) and Charleston Catholic (A).
Unlike Hurricane, SA and Catholic -- who are all appearing in their fourth straight state tournaments -- Hoover (20-12) is back in the big show for the first time since taking the AA title in 2013.
The Huskies have been seeded No. 3 in their field and meet No. 2 Logan (25-6) at approximately 1 p.m. on Friday, June 25 in one AA semifinal. The other semifinal finds No. 1 seed Independence (23-4) going against No. 4 North Marion (19-8) at 10 a.m. on June 25.
Hoover coach J.R. Oliver suspects his team will not be fazed by the spotlight of playing in the state tournament.
"We've played Logan, we've played Independence," Oliver said following Wednesday's regional series victory. "We haven't played many teams up north, but we're familiar with [the competition]. It's not going to be a surprise when we go down there. These kids are going to get ready, they're going to work hard. And we're close to home -- we're going to have lots of fans down there. We just can't wait."
Charleston Catholic (24-9) was seeded second in Class A and is set to play No. 3 Man (21-8) at approximately 8 p.m. on Friday, June 25. In the other semifinal that day, No. 1 Moorefield (20-5) meets No. 4 Williamstown (17-11) at 5 p.m.
The three title games are all set for Saturday, June 26 -- AAA at 10 a.m., AA at about 1 p.m. and A around 4. The 2020 state tournament was not held when the SSAC canceled all spring sports in West Virginia due to COVID-19.