The sky was clear, just a few droplets of rain finding the grass at Roosevelt High, and coach Aldo Parral was disappointed.
“I was actually hoping it would rain today,” he said before Friday night’s game against Dorsey.
He got his wish.
After a week of temperatures flirting with triple digits, the storm clouds of Tropical Storm Kay drifted to Boyle Heights on Friday night, unleashing sheets of rain as Roosevelt ran Dorsey into the slick grass time and time again in a 28-14 win.
Wet conditions are never ideal for a passing team. Perfect, though, for the Rough Riders, who’ve thrown all of 10 passes this season as they’ve ridden their double-wing rushing attack to a 4-0 record. They controlled the pace from the jump with marathon drives, with Isiah Wright running in two touchdowns.
Across the field, after an early touchdown on their first drive of the game off a slant route by junior Semaj Dunn, the Dons struggled to get anything going. On one third down in the third quarter, senior quarterback Ciel Myles slipped and fell. On the next play a Dorsey player fumbled the ball.
“We’re a very fast and explosive team, and it kind of hindered us a little bit,” Dorsey coach Stafon Johnson said.
It was a strange night. Buckets of rain turned the dirt track around the field to mush, fans’ hair to wet string, bleachers to metallic puddles. Two Roosevelt fans stripped off their shirts and sprinted across the field before a snap, stopping play. Dorsey coaches got exasperated with officiating, leading Johnson to leapfrog in the air and chuck his soaked black Dodgers hat into the turf.
One of the oddest nights, Wright said, of his career. But the rain, all in all, came in handy for Roosevelt.
“Maybe God was on our side today,” Wright said with a grin.