Playoff Game in Rain Delay in Lackawanna County

TAYLOR, Pa.-- Friday's soggy forecast is pushing back the first round of district playoffs for many high school football teams.

Players on one team in Lackawanna County went to great lengths to protect their field but Mother Nature won in the end.

Tarps cover the football field at Riverside's stadium in Taylor but all this protection against the elements couldn't prevent the postponement of the first round of district playoffs.

The Riverside Vikings had put down the tarps earlier this week in hopes they'd still be able to battle the Susquehanna Sabers in their Friday night showdown.

“It was Halloween night and a couple of us, before practice we were out here putting down tarps,” said Johnny Gilchrist, the Vikings quarterback.

“Before practice and after practice, we were all working on the tarps,” said junior Diego Rojas. “It took a little bit of process but we got it done.”

But with more rain expected, Friday night football was a wash here with the district pushing the game back to Saturday evening.

“If we were to play the game tonight we wouldn't be playing on wet grass, we`d be playing in four or five inches of mud most likely,” said Vikings head coach Harry Armstrong. “We're happy to be able to hold it off until tomorrow.”

“It's hard to control when you`re on a wet field so this is definitely going to help out,” said junior Razen Reyes.

Armstrong says it's been a tough season with all the rain waterlogging the field.

“It's been an incredibly rainy season, going all the way back to August,” said Armstrong. “I don't think our fields had two or three consistent dry days so it's been very wet, it can't hold any more water so we've done everything we can.”

Armstrong says the players' safety also weighed largely on the decision to delay the game.

“When players are more concerned about their footing and how to keep their balance and things of that nature, it really takes away from the game and it puts them in more jeopardy so the increase of injury could naturally go up from that regard,” said Armstrong.

“Oh yeah, especially when you don't have proper footing you can roll an ankle easily or just hurt anything really,” said Reyes.

Once again at this time, Riverside is set to square off against Susquehanna in this first round of playoffs at 7 p.m. Saturday night in Taylor.