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Caroline Pla is ready to get back on the gridiron

By Will Lewis, Reporter, WLewis@wfmz.com
Published On: Mar 15 2013 07:59:15 PM CDT
Updated On: Mar 16 2013 05:18:38 AM CDT
DOYLESTOWN, Pa. -

A Doylestown girl who loves football will get to play this upcoming season.

The Philadelphia Archbishop has decided to allow co-ed football for Catholic Youth Organization football.

When Caroline Pla was told she would not be able to play for the Romans football team, because no girls were allowed, she set out on a mission to hopefully change the rule.

After nationwide support, a decision from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia says she will be taking the field in the 2013 season.

"Fall is football season," said Caroline Pla, during a YouTube video. "What else would I do without football."

Football has always been number one on the list for Caroline.

Then she found out she would not be allowed to play on her Catholic Youth Organization league team because of a rule not allowing girls to play football.

"I knew it was the Archdiocese's decision and they were the ones that didn't really want me to play," said Pla. "So it didn't really look to good.

She petitioned the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

She also got a lot of national support after an online petition on Change.org.

Caroline shared her story with Ellen Degeneres and other news shows.

Thursday  she heard the news.

Co-ed football will be allowed in 2013.

"I was just really excited and I was actually really surprised too because throughout all of this it didn't really seem like they were going to say yes," added Pla.

In a written statement, the Archdiocese said, "That policy reflected the Catholic thought that gender differences are important and play a larger role in the development of mature Christian male and female identity."

Caroline says she got flowers, balloons and a party to celebrate the decision.

She also says she's learned a valuable lesson.

"If I just sat here and accepted the fact that me and other girls would not be allowed to play then none of this would have changed," added Pla. "But if I stand up and have my voice heard then it can."

Now the ruling is provisional and the archdiocese will revisit the issue again.

Caroline tells 69 News since the ruling she's heard there may be a few more girls trying out next season.