The desolate Hylton sideline, littered with two rows of unmanned megaphones and stray streams of toilet paper, did not look like the temporary home of the football team that had just won a second consecutive Virginia AAA Division 6 title.
That's because just about anyone on hand who had ever been affiliated with the Bulldogs was whooping it up at midfield. The cheerleader-strewn glitter that dotted helmet-matted hair and sweaty grins was as joyful as the sideline was barren.
"I love my 'Dogs" was about the most coherent statement senior lineman John Brower could manage as tears welled in his eyes.
Hylton (14-0) indeed won a second consecutive state title with a 28-27 comeback win today over Varina in front of about 14,000 fans at the University of Richmond Stadium. The Bulldogs trailed 27-7 in the final seconds of the first half but unleashed their deep passing game to pull out a 30th consecutive victory. The win gives them license to wallow in The Streak for another eight months.
"All year long we were ranked No. 3 in the state and Varina was ranked No. 2 and Hampton was ranked No. 1," Hylton Coach Bill Brown said, clutching the game ball.
"[Rankings] are for other people to decide. What we can decide is what happens on the field. We've done that 30 straight, and I'm pretty proud of that."