ST. PETERSBURG — Even with midfield playmakers Adriana Rodrigues and Nastassja Saitta in the lineup, St. Petersburg would have struggled to slow a potent Seminole attack in Friday's PCAC championship game.
With the duo unavailable for the Green Devils, the task became downright impossible.
Seminole scored in the sixth minute and challenged St. Petersburg goalkeeper Allie Clay throughout in an 8-0 victory that lasted just 54 minutes because of the mercy rule.
The win gives the Warhawks their second PCAC title in a row and third in four years.
"(Winning PCAC) was our goal," Seminole coach Steve Kuplicki said. "Now we can focus on districts. We didn't get any injuries or cards tonight and came out playing strong."
Seminole (14-2-2) moved the ball at will against the shorthanded Green Devils (7-6-1). Sierra Lelii ran onto a long pass from Noel Forsman to score just after the opening whistle and set the tone.
Gina Hayduke notched two goals in the first half and Casey Jones found the open net right before halftime to give the Warhawks a 4-0 advantage at the break.
"We try to get up quick on teams so we can play possession ball," Hayduke said.
The second half took just 14 minutes as the Warhawks scored four times in rapid succession. Forsman opened the half with a goal five minutes in, Hayduke scored again to register a hat trick, Megan Lawrence recorded the Warhawks' seventh goal and Lelii grabbed her second goal to end the onslaught.
St. Petersburg, meanwhile, will attempt to regroup today without Rodrigues and Saitta as it hosts Sarasota in a 6A-7 district quarterfinal matchup. Rodrigues graduated early and is in Gainesville beginning her collegiate career at Florida. Saitta injured her knee before the winter break and hasn't played since.
"Center midfielders, crucial positions to be missing," St. Petersburg coach Rhegan Hyypio said. "But we have to work with what we have, and we have a lot of talent spread out."