TAMPA —It was a scene no one saw coming.
The St. Petersburg Catholic Barons stood as a team on Berkeley Prep's field in front of coach Gary Kolb, as he lifted the trophy and yelled, "What color is this?"
Their response in unison: "Gold."
The Barons completed a week of highs and, well, more highs by defeating Tampa Catholic 1-0 on Friday night to win the Class 3A-10 district championship.
"Words can't describe it," said Kolb, whose team knocked off nationally ranked Clearwater Central Catholic in the semifinals. "We really overcame a lot of adversity. We're a young team that really came together over the last few weeks, and that's what it took."
That youth was no better showcased than with the championship-clinching goal scored by freshman Erin Hillman. After a tense, tight start to the game, Hillman broke down the right wing and received a through ball, beating the defense and sliding the ball into the back of the net.
And despite the minimal chances on both sides in the game, the Barons looked more likely to find the game's second goal. Tampa Catholic's best chance to tie came in the first half off a corner. Forward Ashleigh Singleton found space in the box, but her header couldn't find the net.
With the win, St. Petersburg Catholic (10-11) will host its first regional, a situation Kolb said probably surprised his team.
"I'm not surprised because I knew their hearts, but they had to believe that," he said.
"They had to buy into that, and they're buying into it now. And it's showing."