Skydivers parachuting into Joe Albi Stadium on Friday weren’t the night’s most unusual sight.
The biggest spectacle was Rogers High School’s victory on the football field. It was the team’s first win since the last presidential election cycle.
The Pirates ended a 40-game losing streak with a 49-7 victory over North Central in a Greater Spokane League matchup and secured their first win since 2004. Rogers (1-5) also celebrated its homecoming game; three skydivers were part of the halftime entertainment.
“As a former (Rogers) player,” said Pirates head coach Matthew Miethe, “my highlight was in 1994 when we went 5-4 and beat (Gonzaga) Prep on our homecoming. That was the highlight of my life. But to do this? Man, it feels darn good.”
Senior running back Cody Peterson said the Pirates looked forward to the game against North Central, which defeated Rogers for its only win in 2007 and is winless this year through seven games. But there was no sugarcoating his team’s struggles.
“There’s nothing good about it,” said Peterson, who ran for 181 yards and three touchdowns. “But I’m glad I’ve got teammates who give all they’ve got. It paid off tonight, and we got a win.”
North Central scored on its first drive, but Rogers reeled off 42 points before halftime to seize control. Senior Jacob Partridge ran for three touchdowns in the first half and finished with 135 rushing yards.
“I knew that was going to happen,” Miethe said of North Central’s opening touchdown. “We said it all week: ‘Be ready because they’re going to come at you.’ I thought our psyche has been a little fragile, and all week we stressed discipline and effort. You cannot back down.”
It was fitting that Partridge – Rogers’ receiver-turned-quarterback – earned some individual recognition during the game – even if he admitted it meant little in comparison to his first varsity victory. His third-quarter reception gave him 83 career catches, breaking the previous school record set by John Dorr.
“It feels good,” Partridge said, “but I just care that we won.”