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4A final: Mitchell brings home Pasco County's first state crown in boys soccer

Mitchell’s Robert Coleman, right, heads the ball to teammate David Vasquez (No. 20).  Mitchell made its early 1-0 lead stick.

EDMUND D. FOUNTAIN | Times

Mitchell’s Robert Coleman, right, heads the ball to teammate David Vasquez (No. 20). Mitchell made its early 1-0 lead stick.

TAMPA — After games, he often visits his parents to dissect Mitchell soccer.

The conversation often weaves between Spanish and English, Oscar Ubillus bouncing thoughts off his father in search of the perfect game; his mother placing a plate of food in front of him.

This is a game they'll talk about for the rest of their lives.

Mitchell won Pasco County's first state title in boys soccer Thursday with a 1-0 victory against Jacksonville Stanton in the Class 4A final.

"Obviously I don't know everything," Ubillus said. "…They should be as happy as I am because they've supported me, always."

The difference came in the 22nd minute when Mitchell (26-2-3) was awarded a penalty kick for a Stanton (18-9-2) take down in their defensive end.

Mustangs midfielder Max Rockwell's penalty kick fired toward the lower right and was stopped by Stanton keeper Ryan O'Farrell. Mitchell forward Jason Leslie then collected the rebound and scored.

"It was indescribable," Leslie said of his winning shot. "I was not going to let the keeper stop that shot. I would blast it through him if I had to."

Mitchell entered with the mental edge having already defeated Stanton 1-0 on Dec. 21 in a Tampa tournament. The Mustangs controlled the pace Thursday, the one-goal lead fueling their confidence as they outshot the Blue Devils 8-2.

O'Farrell was Stanton's only answer with seven saves. His effort resembled that of Mitchell keeper Josh Berres, who boosted the Mustangs in a 1-0 (3-1 penalty kicks) victory against Pembroke Pines Charter in Wednesday's Class 4A semifinal.

Berres, who barely broke a sweat Thursday, clutched the Class 4A trophy in a locker room beneath the stands.

"I feel like a champion," Berres said. "We've been talking about this since middle school. The time has come. We own it now; it's in our hands."

Mitchell's fans were a force all week, cheering the Mustangs throughout the night and supporting them with a pair of pep rallies, athletic director Ian Mooney said.

For years, Mitchell had been overshadowed by the likes of Land O'Lakes and Pasco, the two Pasco County powers to reach final fours in the past 10 years.

Mitchell was the lone Pasco County school to battle in arguably one of state's toughest district, 6A-7, before a reassignment to 4A-7 this season.

"This just puts us over the top and gives us recognition we've deserved for a long time," Mooney said. "…We've been in a tough district for a while and that's made us better in the long run."

Mitchell principal Jim Michaels passed gold medals to Mitchell's 17 seniors, coaches and underclassmen. Rockwell was asked to make sense of his final high school game.

"We're a part of history now, not just for our school but for all of Pasco County," Rockwell said. "It means a lot because you're always going to be the first. That stays with you for a lifetime."

UP NEXT

State soccer

All games at the University of Tampa's Pepin Stadium

Thursday's results

2A: Delray Beach American Heritage American Heritage 5, Orangewood Christian 2; Tampa Prep 3,

Tallahassee Maclay 1

3A: North Broward Prep 4, Ocala Trinity Catholic 0;

Fort Myers Bishop Verot 2, Jacksonville Episcopal 1

4A: Mitchell 1, Stanton 0

Today's games

2A: Final, 7:30

5A: Melbourne vs.

Auburndale, 10:30 a.m.; Seminole vs. Lincoln, 12:45

6A: Boca Raton vs.

Mandarin, 3; Miami Killian vs. Palm Harbor University, 5:15





On the Web

For a photo gallery from Mitchell's championship match, go to tampabay.com/hometeam

4A final: Mitchell brings home Pasco County's first state crown in boys soccer 02/18/10 [Last modified: Thursday, February 18, 2010 10:42pm]
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