First T-Bone ran into the gym. Then El Niño followed. The crowd roared as the two competitors scowled, flexed and showed every sign of a vigorous fight.
"Do you know what El Niño means in Español?" bellowed El Niño, the wind in his voice practically knocking his fans over.
They screamed in delight.
"It means 'The Niño,'" he roared.
Of course, T-Bone looked amazingly like Carson High School teacher Joe Thornburg and El Niño, wearing a spandex outfit with an El Niño belt, looked quite like physics teacher Mark Johnson. But at Friday's assembly they were there to teach neither English nor physics.
They were there to Jell-O wrestle.
The rink was filled with all colors of slippery gelatin. As the competitors started the fight, the final promise of an hour-long assembly celebrating Friday night's homecoming game against South Lake Tahoe, they punched, they kicked and they both eventually fell to the ground. T-Bone even ripped off El Niño's belt at one point and held it above his head. But El Niño, by show of applause, was declared the winner.
"It was great," said senior Sandy Phillips. "El Niño is the best. He's great."
But the rivalry between the two wrestlers is not new. Senior Adam Houghton, one of six candidates for homecoming king, said T-Bone and El Niño have a history at the school.
"Those two, that's natural for them," he said. "They've been friends forever. They're a good duo."
Both teachers gig it up for the annual Mr. Carson High pageant, but at Friday's event, El Niño really won Houghton over. The homecoming king nominee's favorite moment?
"When Mr. Johnson came out in his spandex."
Candidates for homecoming king, in addition to Houghton, included Kevin Brush, Winstong Chavarria, Jason Dittenber, Edgar Gomez and Jack Maloney.
Nominees for queen were: Lianne Aglietti, Lexi Christensen, Allison Foltz, Christine Hesse, Sophia Raphael and Samantha Wang. The winners, Chavarria and Christensen, were announced at Friday's game.
"It's fun to be nominated," Houghton said. "I don't care if I win. It's just fun to be with your friends and stuff."
Students raised $800 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, with the Jell-O wrestling contest. At Friday's assembly, the class officers were still several hundred dollars short, but an instant collection resulted in $81 from the freshman, $56 from the sophomores, $105 from the juniors and $160 from the seniors. The goal was met.
Also at the assembly, students competed in a race to chow down food, and a scavenger hunt for items like a purple pen, a rap CD and a student card two years old. The seniors won both. The homecoming king and queen nominees also played the Dating Game to see how well partners knew each other.
-- Contact reporter Maggie O'Neill at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1219.