TORONTO, Ont. – Though his Don Bosco Eagles doused him in Gatorade, Mayor Rob Ford was smiling and affectionately patted his players on the back after they captured the Toronto high school championship Thursday.

The victory followed the mayor’s early exit at the libel trial Thursday.

Ford admitted it is tough to balance city hall, coaching and his legal troubles. But did not comment directly on why he ducked out of court early.

“It’s not easy but I made a commitment,” he said. “These kids will never forget what we’ve done. I’ll never forget what they’ve done.”

“This is a win-win for everybody.”

But Coun. Doug Ford said the mayor had the blessing of the court to be on the field.

“From what I understand, the judge approved all this. He’s here to support the kids.”

It is unclear whether the judge knew the football game was behind the mayor’s early exit.

The Don Bosco Eagles won 31-0 against Northern Secondary.