Tag Archives: Football

Burroughs’ Winning Streak and Season Ends, 21-7

By Rick Assad
Sports Editor


It certainly didn’t end as planned for the Burroughs High football team against St. Francis in a CIF Southern Section Southeast Division quarterfinal match at Friedman Field.

In the end, injuries to four starters were part of the Indians’ undoing Friday before a near-full house, falling 21-7, to the Golden Knights, who registered seven sacks on quarterback Steven Hubbell, who was harassed and hurried during much of the game.

“Both defenses played well,” Burroughs coach Keith Knoop said. “Those guys [St. Francis] are big and they can play. But we accomplished a lot and we have a lot to be proud of. I’m going to enjoy all the great things this team accomplished. This is a special group.”

Hubbell came in having tossed 27 touchdowns and four interceptions, but the Golden Knights, who will face top-seeded La Serna in the semifinals next week, held the senior to 128 yards on 21 of 34 with two interceptions.

(Photo By Ivan Galan)

Senior wide receiver Nick Mercado tries to make a play in 21-7 loss to St. Francis in a CIF quarterfinal game. (Photo By Ivan Galan)

The No. 4 seeded Indians were riding a 10-game winning streak and a perfect 7-0 mark in the Pacific League, but managed one touchdown when senior running back Ash Hawkins scored on a one-yard run with 6:54 left in the fourth quarter that cut the Golden Knights’ lead to 14-7.

Burroughs tried an onside kick which St. Francis recovered at midfield, and cashed it into a 65-yard touchdown pass from junior quarterback Miles Bryant (11 of 17 for 174 yards with two picks and was sacked four times) to senior wide receiver Jasher Foster (92 yards on three catches) on second and 25 with 5:30 left that made it a two-score lead.

The Indians (10-2), who mustered 157 total net yards, including 29 yards on the ground, had two more possessions, but each resulted in a punt.

(Photo By Ivan Galan)

Burroughs quarterback Steven Hubbell looks down field for a receiver. (Photo By Ivan Galan)

Junior tailback Chance Bell, who was the leading rusher the last two seasons, didn’t suit up after suffering a knee injury in the opening-round victory over Norwalk, nor did junior center Tommy Howe, who broke his leg in the same game. The Indians were also without senior defensive lineman Cole Gurley and senior linebacker Josue Chicas Ortiz.

“If we had those players we’re a more dynamic group and we can do more,” Knoop said. “It might have been a different outcome.”

(Photo By Ivan Galan)

Senior wide receiver/defensive back Robert Awunganyi tries to use his speed against the Golden Knights. (Photo By Ivan Galan)

It was a defensive struggle as each team had trouble moving the football down the field, but the Golden Knights (245 total yards) scored on their second series as Bryant marched his team 42 yards on seven plays that was capped when senior running back Areg Nazarian (35 yards on 14 carries and 19 yards on four catches) had a 10-yard burst and 2:21 remaining in the first quarter for a 7-0 lead.

The half ended with St. Francis compiling 100 yards on offense and a 7-0 lead, which made it imperative that the Indians come out strong in the second half.

It worked out that way as the Golden Knights turned the ball over when junior wide receiver Daniel Scott (32 yards on two receptions) gained 25 yards on a reception, but then fumbled which senior defensive back Jarret Wrobel recovered at the Burroughs 36-yard line.

(Photo By Ivan Galan)

St. Francis quarterback Miles Bryant passed for two touchdowns in a 21-7 win over the Indians. (Photo By Ivan Galan)

The drive began with Hubbell’s pass to senior wide receiver Erick Hernandez losing one yard, followed by Hubbell getting sacked for a six-yard loss and a five-yard run by Hubbell which  forced senior wide receiver Cade Borland (26 yards on five catches), who injured his arm late in the game, to punt the ball away.

“With all those guys missing, we had a different mental state,” said Hernandez, who had four catches for 21 yards. “We were playing more to survive. I think we ran out of gas. Stuff happens.”

Hernandez, who hopes to play college football, was pleased with the overall effort. “The defense played really well,” he said. “I think if we had those guys our offense would have been able to do more.”

(Photo By Ivan Galan)

Burroughs Coach Keith Knoop gathers the troops after the game. (Photo By Ivan Galan)

Senior wide receiver Nick Mercado, who led the way with 38 yards on four receptions, thought the Indians were going to pull off the upset.

“It definitely didn’t go the way we wanted it to,” he said. “It’s a different game if those guys are in the game. I’m not saying that we would have won, but it would have made a difference, and we would have been able to move the ball easier.”

St. Francis (9-3) then moved ahead 14-0 with 12.9 seconds left in the third quarter when Bryant found senior tight end/defensive lineman Sean Davitt (six sacks) alone in the end zone with a 16-yard offering.

On Burroughs’ next possession, Hubbell (12 carries for minus four yards) orchestrated an 86-yard march that Hawkins (two yards on two carries) climaxed with a short run, but that would be the only offensive highlight.

Senior wide receiver/defensive back Robert Awunganyi (13 yards on five receptions), who also wants to play college football and had an interception, felt the game could have gone in Burroughs’ direction.

“I was pretty disappointed,” he said. “Those players played hard. We made a couple of mistakes. It was pretty tough to take.”

Senior wide receiver/defensive back Hunter Guerin (17 yards on one catch) had a pick and accounted for 26 yards on seven carries to lead the Indians, who had 17 yards on the ground in the opening half.

Burroughs Travels to St. Francis for Quarterfinals

By Rick Assad
Sports Editor


Burroughs High will play its biggest and most important football game of the season on Friday night at Friedman Field on the campus of St. Francis in La Canada in a CIF Southern Section Southeast Division quarterfinal match.

A win and the Indians advance to semifinals, but getting to the next step won’t be easy in front of a loud and hostile crowd, to say nothing of how potent and skilled the Golden Knights (8-3) are.

The Indians own a 10-game winning streak after suffering a season-opening defeat at the hands of Calabasas on the road, 45-25.

Since then, Burroughs has paraded around and past every opponent in its way and has scored 40 points or better in seven games.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Senior wide receiver/defensive back Robert Awunganyi is a threat whenever he touches the ball. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

The offense, which averages 376.9 total net yards, is triggered by senior quarterback Steven Hubbell, who has thrown 27 touchdown passes with four interceptions.

Hubbell has accounted for 1,696 yards through the air and has hit on 125 of 189 attempts. When pressured, Hubbell will make like a running back and has picked up 252 yards with six scores.

Junior tailback Chance Bell is a dynamic and highly-skilled runner with the ability of turning a short gainer into a long one in the blink of an eye.

In Burroughs’ first-round victory over Norwalk, 16-9, Bell, who leads the team with 1,378 yards and 23 touchdowns, injured his knee on the first play and had one carry for four yards.

If Bell, who has paced the Indians’ ground game the last two campaigns, isn’t able to play, Coach Keith Knoop has several others who will try to carry the load.

They include senior Ash Hawkins, who has 252 yards and two scores, junior speedster Sammy Duran, who has 287 yards and two touchdowns, and junior Oscar Perez, who had 40 yards in last Friday’s win over the Lancers.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs’ defensive is a hard-hitting group with 15 interceptions and 32 sacks. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Hubbell will find senior wide receiver Erick Hernandez (35 receptions for 511 yards and 13 touchdowns) along with senior wide receiver Cade Borland (32 catches for 405 yards and four scores).

Other targets include senior wide receiver Nick Mercado (206 yards on 19 catches for five touchdowns), senior wide receiver Robert Awunganyi (222 yards on 11 catches for two scores) and senior wide receiver Torin Harris (15 receptions for 214 yards and three scores).

The Indians’ defense has racked up 32 sacks, 15 interceptions and is spearheaded by a bevy of players including senior linebacker Branden Garcia (nine solo tackles and 54 assists) and senior defensive back Devlin Jimenez (15 solo tackles, 29 assists, one and a half sacks, three interceptions and two passes defended).

Others in the fray include senior linebacker Connor Garden (14 solo tackles, 34 assists, two blocked field goals, five sacks, four passes defended, two picks and one fumble recovery) and senior defensive back Jarret Wrobel (23 solo tackles, 22 assists, five interceptions and five passes defended).

The Golden Knights are riding a four-game winning streak that includes a 21-19 victory over host Warren in their opening-round game, and average 142.8 yards receiving and 134.9 yards on the ground.

Junior quarterback Miles Bryant makes the offense click and has passed for 1,571 yards with 14 scores and two picks and has completed 116 of 179 attempts.

Longtime St. Francis Coach Jim Bonds will have the Golden Knights ready against Burroughs.

The ground game is sound and is led by senior running back Areg Nazarian (759 yards and six touchdowns), while junior wide receiver Jace Harrick has 245 yards and three touchdowns.

Nazarian, who has 1,176 all-purpose yards, has caught 25 passes for 203 yards and one score, while Harrick has 100 yards on 10 receptions and one touchdown.

Senior wide receiver Jasher Foster has accumulated 928 all-purpose yards, including 153 yards on punt returns, 137 yards on kickoff returns and 122 yards rushing.

St. Francis opened its season with wins at home over West Covina 36-24, and Moorpark 29-23, on the road against Monrovia 32-14 and Canyon 35-20.

The Golden Knights then dropped three games including a 34-0 setback at Calabasas, a 27-20 double overtime loss at Salesian, and 27-21 at home versus Harvard-Westlake.

What followed were triumphs over visiting Cathedral 31-14 and St. Paul 24-7, and road victories over La Salle 27-14 and Warren by two points.

The Golden Knights are always tough and hard-hitting on defense and are led by senior defensive end Sean Davitt (49 solo tackles and 12 assists with 16 sacks).

Senior defensive back Tre Polomalu has 35 solo tackles with 24 assists, two passes defended, one pick and one blocked field goal, and junior linebacker Max Jakeway (68 solo tackles, 32 assists, two sacks and one pass defended).

With a win, either Burroughs or St. Francis will be one more triumph away from the championship game.

Burbank’s Football Season Ends, 41-21

By Jim Riggio

Dominguez High was bigger, stronger and faster. The Burbank football team did all it could Friday night, but fell to the visiting Dons 41-21 in a first round CIF Southern Section Southeast Division playoff contest at Glendale High’s Moyse Field.

“We’re a young team,” Burbank coach Richard Broussard said.  “The game plan was solid. There’s a lot of pressure. There’s a lot of beef up there (Dominguez offensive and defensive lines). They just lay on you. Our kids battled. I’m so proud of them. I’m proud of how hard they played and how they finished the game.”

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burbank junior wide receiver Forest Fajardo catches a pass during a 41-21 loss to Dominguez Compton in a CIF opening-round game. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Dominguez (8-3) suited up just 24 players. But they were 24 of the best players Burbank has ever faced.

Senior running back Henry Williams rushed for 222 yards and four touchdowns on 18 carries to lead the Dons.

He put up the impressive numbers while playing on a sprained meniscus and a slightly torn medial collateral ligament in his left knee.

Williams got Dominguez on the board just seconds into the contest.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Tailback Darnell Williams runs for yardage against Dominguez. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burbank (6-5) fumbled the ball and Dominguez recovered on the very first play from scrimmage. Williams scored his first touchdown on the second play from scrimmage, a two-yard run.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Senior Andrew Hank kicks off against the Dons in a CIF first-round setback. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Dominguez also got a stellar performance from freshman quarterback Sean Harlston, who carried the ball six times for 84 yards. He also had an interception on defense.

The visiting Dons went up 14-0 with 6:10 left in the first quarter as senior running back Royce Anson scored on a five-yard run.

Burbank got on the board with 1:01 left in the first quarter as junior quarterback Guy Gibbs hooked up with junior wide receiver Forest Fajardo on a 10-yard touchdown pass.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burbank players look glum on the sideline after loss to the Dons. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

The Bulldogs got within six points as Gibbs scored on a one-yard run 9:07 left in the first half to make it 20-14.

But every time Burbank did something well, Dominguez seemed to do it better.

Williams scored on a 50-yard run on the first play from scrimmage in the second half. Williams later added a five-yard touchdown run which made it 34-14.

After yet another Dominguez touchdown, Burbank fought back and scored with 6:28 left as junior running back Jake Kelley scored on a two-yard run.

Burroughs Downs Norwalk, 16-9, In Hard-Hitting Playoff Game

By Rick Assad
Sports Editor


Hard-hitting and low-scoring were the stories in Friday’s CIF Southern Section Southeast Division opening-round playoff football game between Burroughs High and Norwalk at Memorial Field.

In the end, the Indians prevailed 16-9 over the Lancers with senior quarterback Steven Hubbell tossing two touchdown passes, one in each half, while junior tailback Chance Bell, the team’s leading ground-gainer the last two seasons, injured his knee on his initial four-yard carry and didn’t return to the game.

“I knew that our offensive production was going to go down when Chance went out of the game,” Burroughs coach Keith Knoop said. “We had to be creative, but Ash [Hawkins} and Oscar [Perez] stepped up.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Senior running back Ash Hawkins had 45 yards in 16-9 CIF win over Norwalk. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs (10-1), the No. 4 seeded team, readies for a quarterfinal encounter with St. Francis (8-3), which knocked off host Warren, 19-17, at Friedman Field on the Golden Knights’ campus.

This is Burroughs first playoff victory since 2010 when it defeated El Rancho.

The Indians came in having topped 40 points in seven games, but struggled at times to move the ball. Burroughs managed 336 total net yards, including 150 yards on 35 carries.

Several players had to take up the slack left by Bell’s absence, as Hubbell, a nifty runner, tacked on 51 yards on 15 carries and had three runs of 10 yards or more including a 16-yarder and two 13-yard sprints.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Junior tailback Chance Bell left the game after his first carry. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

“I expected a different game because we knew that they [Norwalk] was a physical team,” said Hubbell, who hit 13 of 19 for 186 yards and one interception. “We knew it was going to be a tough game. Sometimes we didn’t score when we got in the red zone, but our defense was fantastic. Our defense did what it always does.”

Hawkins, a senior, came up with 45 yards on 14 rushes, while Perez, a junior, chimed in with 40 yards on three carries, but did fumble.

“I like getting the ball and it was a good night,” said Hawkins, who had 29 yards in the opening half on nine carries and would have had a few carries if Bell had played the while game. “I really didn’t think that I’d get that much time.”

The Indians, who finished 7-0 and first place in the Pacific League, led 7-0 when Hubbell moved Burroughs 81 yards on eight plays and capped it with a 45-yard toss to senior wide receiver Erick Hernandez with 33 seconds left in the opening quarter.

“Physically I feel fine,” said Hernandez, who had two catches for 55 yards. “It’s the guys in the trenches who get banged up. Our offense played alright, but our defense played really well.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Indians’ senior quarterback Steven Hubbell unloaded two scoring passes in 16-9 CIF opening-round win. Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

The Lancers (5-6) opened the scoring with a 34-yard field goal from junior Eduardo Nava and 5:01 left in the first quarter as the drive began at the Norwalk 33-yard line and consumed 14 plays.

When senior wide receiver/kicker Cade Borland (55 yards and three catches) drilled a 24-yard field goal and 7:49 left before the intermission, the Indians bolted ahead 10-3 on a drive that started at the Norwalk 46-yard line and took eight plays.

The Lancers (228 total yards) are a run-first offense and accumulated 226 yards on the ground on 46 rushes, including 131 yards in the second half.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Wide receiver Robert Awunganyi returns a punt in victory over Norwalk in a CIF first-round game. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Norwalk, which finished in third place in the Suburban League, closed to within 10-9 and 4:55 left in the third quarter on a 25-yard run and Nava’s point after hitting the right upright.

When the Indians took over on their next series at the Burroughs 23-yard line, Hubbell, who came in having tossed only three interceptions, was picked off by junior defensive end Robert Rodriguez, but Nava’s 33-yard field goal sailed wide right.

What followed was an 80-yard, 12-play march that ended when Hubbell found senior wide receiver Torin Harris (20 yards on two receptions) with an eight-yard bullet as 9:01 remained in the fourth quarter.

When Borland’s point after was blocked by sophomore strong safety Josh Martinez, the Indians pulled ahead by seven points.

BHS, JB Have CIF Playoff Games

By Rick Assad
Sports Editor


This is going to be a busy week for Burroughs High and Burbank as each school will be involved in CIF Southern Section playoff action.

The Indians’ girls’ volleyball team has a home date against Pacifica Oxnard (14-7 overall) in an opening-round Division II-A match on Tuesday. It’s scheduled to commence at 6 p.m.

Burroughs went undefeated in Pacific League play at 14-0 and 21-7 after sweeping rival Burbank, which placed fourth in league. If Burroughs wins, it will have another match on Thursday.CIF Southern Section

On the same day, the Indians’ boys’ water polo squad (12-11) will have a home game against Atascadero (9-14) in a Division 4 wildcard match.

Three days later, football will dominate as the Indians and Bulldogs will each have home games on Friday, with kickoffs scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Burroughs, which went 9-1 and 7-0 in league, will play Norwalk (4-6) at Memorial Field.

Burbank, which went 6-4 and 5-2 for second place in league after losing to the Indians 47-21 in the “Big Game” last Friday, will face Dominguez Compton (7-3) at either Moyse Field on the campus of Glendale High or Occidental College in Eagle Rock.

Burroughs JV, Frosh Knock Off Burbank

By Rick Assad
Sports Editor


For the Burroughs High junior varsity and freshman football teams, Thursday’s 31-30 and 50-30 Pacific League wins respectively over city rival Burbank at Memorial Field were satisfying.

The game winner was provided by Jonathan Rivas, who booted a 39-yard field goal with 11:03 left in the fourth quarter that gave Burroughs Coach Keith Recchia his first win over the Bulldogs in five seasons.

“This is an unbelievable feeling,” Recchia said before getting a Gatorade bath from several players. “We’re the league champs and it feels great. They score a lot of points and we knew that we were going to have to score a lot of points. It was a really good game and it came down to the wire.”

With the victory, Burroughs, Burbank and Crescenta Valley all finished in a three-way tie for first place in the league.

“It was a great football game,” said Rivas, a sophomore who replaced injured kicker Cade Borland on the varsity for a few games. “I give credit to the snapper and the holder. I wasn’t nervous at all. I was confident.”

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burroughs kicker Jonathan Rivas had game-winning 39-yard field goal. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burbank (7-3 and 6-1 in league) began its last drive at the Bulldog seven-yard line and moved to the Indians 47-yard line, but advanced no further.

The Bulldogs (313 total net yards) took a 6-0 lead when sophomore running back Jiovanni Marshall (89 yards on 21 carries) found the end zone from five yards out and 8:08 left in the first quarter. Sophomore running back Nathan Cruz added 84 yards on 16 carries for the Bulldogs.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burroughs junior varsity quarterback David Lennstrom helped lead the Indians to 31-30 win over Burbank. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burroughs (7-3 and 6-1 in league) answered with an eight-play, 79-yard drive as sophomore running back Ben Peters (87 yards on 15 carries) scored on an 11-yard run and 3:38 left in the initial stanza and led 7-6 on the extra point from Rivas.

The Indians (373 total yards) moved ahead 14-6 when sophomore quarterback David Lennstrom capped a 53-yard, five-play excursion with a 19-yard gallop and 11:49 left in the second quarter. Rivas added the point after.

“I knew that we would keep going,” said Lennstrom, who hit four of eight passes for 98 yards with one interception and added 110 yards on 19 carries. “We didn’t want to lose. We lost to Crescenta Valley [23-21] last week and we wanted to bounce back and we did.”

When sophomore linebacker Brian Gutierrez scooped up a blocked punt and returned the ball 32 yards and 9:30 showing before the half, Burroughs pulled ahead 21-6 after Rivas converted the point after.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burbank junior varsity running back Nathan Cruz had 84 yards on 16 carries in one-point loss to Burroughs. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burbank came within 21-14 when sophomore quarterback Lalo Barragan (five for nine and 149 yards) found sophomore wide receiver Isaac Motta with a 26-yard bullet and 6:59 left before the break. Sophomore wide receiver Austin Ortega added the two-point conversion.

The Bulldogs bolted ahead 22-21 with 6:08 left before the intermission, but Burroughs answered with a 30-yard laser from Lennstrom to sophomore wide receiver Devin Harrison and 16.9 seconds left in the quarter, and after the extra point by Rivas, the Indians darted ahead 28-22.

Burbank’s only points in the second half was a three-yard jaunt from Marshall and 6:50 left in the third quarter. Barragan tossed the two-point pass to sophomore wide receiver Kaydon Spens.

In a wild and entertaining freshman game, the points seemed like they were coming out of a faucet as Burroughs led 14-0 after the first quarter and were ahead 20-8 at the half.

The Indians (433 total net yards) pulled in front 34-14 at the end of three quarters, and each team scored 16 points in the fourth quarter.

“It was really satisfying to get this win over Burbank because I think we underachieved early in the season,” Burroughs coach Art Yanez said. “But we finished strong at the end and had a four-game winning streak.”

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Burroughs freshman running back Alex Deptula ran for 158 yards with two scores. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Running back Jake Barraza had a one-yard run and 4:47 left in the opening quarter and quarterback Nathan Piper’s two-point toss to Barraza made it 8-0.

Burroughs marched ahead 14-0 when running back Alex Deptula scored from seven yards out and 1:28 left in the initial quarter.

With 5:32 remaining in the second quarter, wide receiver/running back Diego Garcia turned in a spectacular 80-yard dash that catapulted the Indians in front 20-0.

The Bulldogs finally scored when running back Christopher Stanis (61 yards on five rushes) found the end zone from 11 yards out and 1:16 left before the break. Raymond Dones (83 yards on 11 carries) bolted in for the two-point conversion as Burbank narrowed the lead to 20-8.

Garcia’s three-yard run with 6:42 left in the third quarter and Piper’s two-point toss to Deptula (158 yards on 10 carries) made it 28-8 and capped a seven-play, 58-yard march.

“Our offensive line did a great job,” said Piper who completed one of four passes for 34 yards. “We beat those guys [Burbank], but we respect them.”

Burbank (3-7 and 1-1 in league) trimmed the lead to 28-14 when Matthew Porras (40 yards on 15 rushes) dotted the end zone with a one-yard waltz and 2:35 left in the third quarter.

The see-saw battle continued as the Indians (5-5 and 3-0 in league) responded with a two-play, 56-yard strike that was climaxed when Garcia (game-best 234 yards on 21 carries) scored on a seven-yard scamper and two minutes left in the third quarter as Burroughs moved ahead 34-14.

A one-yard run from Porras and 9:47 remaining in the fourth quarter and a two-point pass from Porras to Brian McDonald lowered the lead to 34-22.

The scoring binge continued as the Indians tacked on a 10-yard dash from Garcia with eight minutes left. After Piper located wide receiver Niccolo Chuidian with a two-point offering, it became 42-22.

Burbank came within 42-30 when Stanis scored on a 45-yard scurry and 5:32 left in the fourth quarter that ended a seven-play, 61-yard march. Dones added the two-point conversion.

The scoring finally came to an end on a four-yard burst from Deptula with 2:09 remaining in the fourth quarter and finalized a nine-play, 53-yard drive. Garcia’s two-point conversion put the Indians ahead by 20 points.

The Bulldogs (271 total yards) had a difficult time stopping Burroughs’ run which finished with 399 yards.

“That’s their strength and that’s our weakness,” Burbank coach Joe Manasewitsch said. “Our defense couldn’t stop them. When we were down 20-0, we knew it was going to be tough. The effort was there, but I guess it wasn’t meant to be today.”

Burroughs Thumps Crescenta Valley, 34-3

By Rick Assad
Sports Editor


Burroughs High’s showdown with defending Pacific League and CIF Southern Section Southeast Division champion Crescenta Valley was supposed to be a challenge.

Turns out that it was anything but as the Indians pushed aside the Falcons, 34-3, on Friday night at Memorial Field, and now await city rival Burbank in the “Big Game.”

The game was hard-hitting and somewhat close at the intermission as Burroughs led, 21-3, before adding two touchdowns in the fourth quarter.

“We felt like we were more physical,” Burroughs coach Keith Knoop said. “They had to matchup with our athletes. I think that our O[offensive]-line dominated.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Senior linebacker Connor Garden races to a 35-yard pick for a score. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Knoop also addressed the Burbank game. “We need to do what we do,” he said. “We need to take the emotion out of it. That doesn’t mean not to play with emotion. We do, but we don’t want to be too emotional.”

Junior tailback Chance Bell gained 38 yards on six carries after sustaining an injury to his right shoulder in the opening half. He didn’t play in the second half and will be evaluated. Bell is expected to play in the Burbank game.

Crescenta Valley (five turnovers) fumbled on its initial possession when senior wide receiver Ben Valdez was hit at the Falcons 36-yard line. What followed was a six-play drive that consisted of five runs including a 14-yarder from senior quarterback Steven Hubbell (12 carries for 12 yards) and 7:57 left in the opening quarter that made it 7-0.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Tailback Chance Bell played first half after sustaining shoulder injury. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Hubbell’s 40-yard perfect spiral to senior wide receiver Erick Hernandez on the first play of the second quarter and 11:52 left capped an 80-yard, seven-play march that gave the Indians, who have an eight-game winning streak, a 14-0 edge.

“We strive to get better every week and we put in a lot of effort,” said Hubbell, who hit four of eight passes for 70 yards. “We need to focus on the game [Burbank] and keep your emotions in. We can’t have penalties and we need to do the basics. This week we can’t worry about all the social media stuff.”

The Falcons (6-3 and 4-2 in league) trimmed the lead to 14-3 with 6:24 remaining in the second quarter when junior Alex Atanackovic converted a 30-yard field goal. The drive began at the Crescenta Valley 29-yard line and concluded 12 plays later.

Burroughs (8-1 and 6-0 in league) responded with a dagger in the form of a 99-yard kickoff return by Robert Awungyanyi, who took the ball and weaved his way past the initial defenders and then found a little space and raced into the end zone.

“I think mostly I was able to score because of my blockers,” said Awunganyi, who also had a catch for 14 yards.  “I caught the ball at the one-yard and came out and saw a hole and took off.”

Awunganyi also spoke about the upcoming game with the Bulldogs. “I think it’s going to be exciting,” he said. “I think we’re going to make big plays on offense and we’re going to have big plays on defense. But it’s going to be a good game.”

The Indians (one turnover) were now ahead 21-3 with 6:07 left before the break, but more importantly it seemed to take any momentum away from the Falcons, who came into the contest thinking they had a chance to knock off Burroughs.

After a scoreless third quarter, the Indians (230 total net yards) exploded for 14 points in the final quarter that included a 35-yard interception and score by senior linebacker Connor Garden of junior quarterback Tyler Hill with 11:09 remaining that made it 27-3.

Junior running back Oscar Perez’s four-yard waltz with 4:56 left capped a nine-play, 51-yard march and gave Burroughs a 31-point lead. Perez carried the ball on the last four plays for 19 yards.

The final tally was made possible after senior defensive back Hunter Guerin recovered a fumble by Valdez at the Burroughs 49-yard line.

The Indians churned out 160 yards on the ground as senior running back Ash Hawkins contributed 80 yards on 13 carries. The Falcons finished with 178 total yards.

Burroughs Football Shows Its Best Side

By Tania Tchalikian

The night was truly eventful at Memorial Field as the Burroughs High football team had their Senior Night, followed by a 34-3 win over Crescenta Valley on Friday as the Indians now share a portion of the Pacific League championship.

The game consisted of many penalties on both sides. When the Indians got penalized, they made sure to overcome it, while not allowing the Falcons to use it to their advantage.

Crescenta Valley had numerous turnovers, which caused the Indians to run with it, literally, and score.

The game turned into a running game very early on. Penalties against the Indians gave the Falcons an advantage, however, the Indians’ defense did not allow those penalties to affect the game as they made sure to hold back the Falcons’ offense.

Crescenta Valley threw two interceptions, one that led to an Indians touchdown by senior linebacker Connor Garden.

Although the Falcons had opportunities to score, they were unable to produce as Burroughs’ stingy defense held them to only a field goal.

A remarkable play in the second quarter by senior wide receiver Robert Awunganyi on a 99-yard kickoff return for a touchdown gave the Indians a 21-3 lead.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Senior running back Ash Hawkins filled in nicely accounting for 80 yards. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

It’s safe to say the teams wanted to show their running skills. Senior quarterback Steven Hubbell was more comfortable running the ball as he too ran in one for a touchdown.

He preferred the running game against the Falcons. “Tonight running definitely, the pass game wasn’t… I couldn’t get a rhythm but I’ll be ready next week,” said Hubbell, who completed four of eight passes for 70 yards.

Hubbell went on to say the defense by the Falcons was one he hadn’t seen in a while.

“They had a lot of different schemes. We haven’t seen an eagle look in a while,” he said.

Still Hubbell believes his team played a good game. “The team played well, the defense played amazing. I’m personally not happy with my performance, but I know I’ll be prepared next week.”

The Indians are undefeated in league, and are going to face big-time rival Burbank next Friday as Burroughs hopes to get the conference title to itself.

Senior running back Ash Hawkins got to see some playing time where he showed his skills and ability.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs’ offense lines up before the snap. Indians prevailed 34-3 over the Falcons. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Hawkins gained 80 yards on 13 carries and definitely contributed to the team and continued what junior running back Chance Bell had started.

Hawkins described what he felt and how it was like going out there against the defending league champion Falcons.

“I feel pretty good about it. It was a good game. I just wanted to help the team win. I just wanted to go out there and pick up where the other running backs left off,” he said.

After Bell hurt his shoulder in the first quarter, he sat out the rest of the game and that’s when Hawkins got his time under the bright lights.

Bell hopes to be back against Burbank. He said he will have it checked out. “Going to get an X- ray on Monday and we will see how it goes. If it’s not too bad, then I’m going to play on Friday,” Bell said.

Either way, Burroughs tends to figure out a way to fill in any position needed. When senior kicker Cade Borland, who also plays wide receiver, went down with a concussion a couple of weeks ago against Arcadia, the Indians were able to fill in his position during the game and improvised and went on to win.

Burroughs may be great for doing “spur in the moment” calls.

Burbank Shoves Aside Pasadena In 35-16 Victory

By Rick Assad
Sports Editor


It’s hardly surprising Burbank High earned a 35-16 win over Pasadena in a Pacific League football game on Thursday night at Memorial Field, but it could be argued it was somewhat unlikely based on the halftime score.

No matter, the victory gives the Bulldogs an opportunity to share the league title if defending champion Crescenta Valley knocks off host Burroughs tonight.

“We just did our job in the second half,” Burbank coach Richard Broussard said. “We weren’t scared to lose. In the first half, it’s like we were scared to play. We played not to lose. We can’t think that way. We need to quit playing not to lose. They were too anxious knowing if we won, we’d have a chance to play for the league title.”

Broussard said there are small matters that need to be addressed before playing Burroughs on Nov. 6. “We’ll figure it out. We’re playing for a championship. Now it means something.”

Down 9-7 to begin the second half, Burbank (6-3 and 5-1 in league) received a break when senior defensive lineman Jha’rod Horhn recovered a fumbled punt at the Pasadena five-yard line.

Three plays later, junior quarterback Guy Gibbs barreled into the end zone with 10:06 left in the third quarter as Burbank forged ahead, 14-9.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Quarterback Guy Gibbs shined in a 35-19 win over Pasadena. Gibbs had a rushing and passing score. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Pasadena again was forced to punt, and this time Burbank started at the Pasadena 49-yard line.

Gibbs (13 of 21 pass attempts for 195 yards and one interception) drove his team seven plays and capped the drive with a four-yard burst from junior wide receiver/running back Joey Miller (46 yards on five carries) and 6:15 left in the third quarter that catapulted Burbank in front, 21-9.

Burbank (333 total net yards) closed the third quarter with a four-play, 50-yard excursion that was sealed with a one-yard run from Miller and 6.5 seconds left that made it 28-9. Miller has a spectacular 43-yard sprint on the drive.

Burbank received another break when Pasadena junior tight end/quarterback Kris Jolley fumbled which junior defensive back Miguel Vasquez recovered at the Burbank 40-yard line.

From there, sophomore running back Darnell Williams (57 yards on 10 carries) capped an eight-play drive with a one-yard bolt and 4:30 remaining in the fourth quarter that made it 35-9.

The drive was highlighted with a 25-yard pass from Gibbs to senior wide receiver Max Weisman (game-best 137 yards on seven receptions) that placed the ball at the Pasadena 35-yard line.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

BHS senior wide receiver Max Weisman caught seven passes for 137 yards, including a 71-yard touchdown. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Gibbs and Weisman hooked up on a 71-yard pass and 5:16 left in the opening quarter that made it 7-0 on Burbank’s second possession. Weisman made several clever moves and dodged numerous would-be tacklers as he bolted down the left sideline. The score was made possible when junior defensive lineman Danny Porras pounced on a fumble by junior quarterback Hayden Zepeda.

“This was a very competitive game,” said Weisman, who recently committed to the United States Military Academy. “We need to clean up some of the little things.”

When asked about the upcoming clash against city rival Burroughs, Weisman feels confident in his team’s ultimate success. “It’s going to be a great game,” he said. “There’s going to be excitement and energy. We feed off that energy.”

Burbank junior running back Nick Warren, who had 45 yards on 10 rushes, agrees.

“The first half was a little like the Muir game [21-20 loss],” he said. “We didn’t take them lightly. We know they’re a good team. But we came out in the second half and played a lot better. It’s not a single guy who is responsible to speak up. It’s everyone speaking up.”

Pasadena (4-5 and 2-4 in league) trimmed the lead to 7-6 when Zepeda drilled junior wide receiver Jeremy DeJesus with an 11-yard laser and 5:17 left in the second quarter after senior running back Jeremiah Jones failed on the two-point conversion run.

Pasadena’s advantage expanded to 9-7 when senior Alexander Hernandez drilled a 31-yard field goal with 2:44 left before the intermission.

The final points were turned in by Jolley on a two-yard run and 13.5 seconds left in the fourth quarter that cut the lead to 19 points.

Burroughs Pummels Glendale, 65-7

By Rick Assad
Sports Editor


Burroughs High’s 65-7 win over Glendale on Friday night in a Pacific League football game at Memorial Field was as easy as the score indicated.

The victory also gave longtime Burroughs Coach Keith Knoop his 100th career win, and extended the Indians’ winning streak to seven games.

It’s going to get much tougher over the final two regular-season games that include a clash with city rival Burbank on Nov. 6, but that’s still two weeks down the road.

“Sometimes in games like this, you can’t get your rhythm,” Knoop said. “But we try to keep the same schedule and keep the same format. It helps keep your timing. We have more athletes than they [Glendale] do.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Chance Bell ran for 114 yards and scored four touchdowns. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Junior tailback Chance Bell accounted for four rushing touchdowns, including three in the opening half as the Indians (7-1 and 5-0 in league) led 39-0.

Bell, who finished with 114 yards on nine carries, tallied his first score on a 10-yard run with 1:56 left in the opening quarter as the Indians led 7-0. The drive began at the Burroughs 42-yard line and came to a close seven plays later.

Bell’s second touchdown made it 14-0 with 1:23 left in the same stanza and was a one-yard burst that came after a fumble by junior quarterback/wide receiver Arjuan Ruiz deep inside Glendale (1-7 and 0-5 in league) territory.

Bell tacked on a four-yard run with 1:47 left in the second quarter that made it 32-0 after senior defensive back Devlin Jimenez intercepted Ruiz.

When Bell added a 65-yard sprint on the first play of the second half, the lead became 46-0, and called an end to Bell’s evening.

Senior quarterback Steven Hubbell was efficient as he completed eight of 12 pass attempts for 91 yards.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Robert Awunganyi had a 99-yard kickoff return and a 56-yard punt return for scores. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Hubbell’s 19-yard laser to senior wide receiver Erick Hernandez (34 yards three catches) with 4:37 showing in the second quarter pushed the lead to 20-0, and capped an eight-play, 71-yard march.

“I take every week the same,” said Hubbell, who has 19 touchdown passes and three interceptions. “Glendale doesn’t have the same talent level, but we try to play the same. The good thing is that everyone gets to play and I like to see that. We know Crescenta Valley [Burroughs’ next opponent] is another door that we have to knock down.”

Hubbell also added a 71-yard sprint down the left sideline with 12.9 seconds left before the intermission that gave the Indians (455 total net yards) a 39-0 advantage.

If Burroughs is able to claim the league title, it should get a relatively high seed in the CIF Southern Section Southeast Division playoffs, and a first-round home game.

“We know that we’ll face good teams in the playoffs,” Hubbell said. “We know that we’re going to play a competitive team down the road.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Junior running back Sammy Duran had a 49-yard touchdown run. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Senior quarterback Andy Amela played in the second half and hit three of five attempts for 50 yards.

Senior running back Ash Hawkins (three carries for nine yards) had a four-yard scoring romp with 4:02 remaining in the third quarter that bolstered Burroughs’ lead to 53-0. The drive started at the Indians’ 28-yard line and consumed 10 plays.

The fourth quarter was played with a running clock, but the Indians were still able to score as junior running back Sammy Duran (96 yards on six rushes) raced to a 49-yard touchdown that made it 59-0 with 7:45 showing.

Senior wide receiver Robert Awunganyi chimed in with a 99-yard kickoff return and 37.8 showing that made it a 58-point spread, and came before Ruiz’s nine-yard burst with 51.8 seconds left. Ruiz had 92 yards on 25 carries.

Awunganyi also had a 56-yard punt return for a score with 3:10 left in the second quarter for a 26-0 lead over the Nitros (192 total yards).

Burroughs plays the Falcons on Friday at Memorial Field with a 7 p.m. kickoff.