A Look Back at the Best Teams of 2019

By On December 31, 2019

With a lot of talent in many sports at both Burbank and Burroughs highs, being a top 10 team out of the many there are in the city does not come without a tremendous amount of hard work and success. We take back a look at what we feel were the 10 best teams between the two schools during the 2019 calendar year. This includes winter and spring sports teams during the 2018-2019 school year as well as fall sports teams from the 2019-2020 school year.

No. 1 Burbank boys cross country

The Bulldogs may have not won a Pacific League title, but they are still deserving of the top honor. In the season finale, the California State Meet in Fresno, Burbank topped league champion Crescenta Valley, which had finished second in the CIF Southern Section Division 1 just a week earlier.
Burbank finished fifth in the Southern Section Division 1 championship and were the 10th best team in California (all divisions combined) in Fresno. Senior Victor Goli led the Bulldogs in rebounding from an injury plagued junior year. Fellow seniors Dayne Ellis, Anthony Chiaravalle, Steven Wright and Tadeh Shanazari will certainly have plenty of great memories to last a lifetime. Juniors Andres Leon and Tyler Jenkins will return next season in hopes of leading the next group of great Burbank runners.

(Photo by Ross A Benson)

No. 2 Burroughs boys volleyball

If any program in the city deserves the program of the decade award, it is clearly the Indians’ boys volleyball program. Burroughs has won 10 consecutive league titles under Coach Joel Brinton. Although the Indians’ record at 20-13 may not look overly impressive, Burroughs schedules a number of elite teams in nonleague matches and also plays in several top tournaments. The Indians were also relatively young last season. Kade McGovern had an outstanding sophomore season and has the potential to be as good as any player that has ever played for the Indians. Outside hitter Connor Burroughs is another top returner for 2020.

Niko Coccio

No. 3 Burroughs boys golf

The Indians finished second in the Pacific League, but made things very interesting because they gave traditional power Arcadia all it could handle. Burroughs even defeated Arcadia by 20 strokes in one league match at DeBell Golf Course. The good thing for Burroughs is that much of the team returns in 2020. Lincoln Melcher, who has committed to UCLA, was outstanding as a freshman and along with Kodiak Hernandez give the Indians a great 1-2 punch for two more seasons. Niko Coccio, Daniel Gonzalez and Ryan McGowan are expected back in 2020.

No. 4 Burroughs girls soccer

The Indians won their first league title since 1993 and finished the season 16-4-2. Senior Abbie Riggs as well as sophomores Lauryn Bailey and Lily Gonzalez played a key role in giving Burroughs the historic title. Burroughs lost in the second round of the CIF Southern Section Division 4 playoffs to Hemet.

No. 5 Burroughs boys soccer

A young Burroughs squad won the Pacific League title and the 11th time under longtime coach Mike Kodama. The Indians advanced to the second round of the CIF Southern Section Division 3 playoffs, finishing the season with a 15-6-3 record. Sophomore Manny Gonzalez earned All-CIF honors as he scored 18 goals.

No. 6 Burroughs girls volleyball

The Indians went 18-6 overall and captured the Pacific League crown under veteran coach Edwin Real. Unfortunately, a tough playoff draw saw the Indians end their season in the first round of the playoffs against a very talented Murrieta Valley team, which entered the match with a 23-8 record.

Senior Lydie Grote led the way and signed a letter of intent with the University of California, Berkeley.

 

No. 7 Burbank girls cross country

Like the Burbank boys’ team, the Burbank girls’ cross country team finished second in the Pacific League behind Crescenta Valley. Also like the boys’ team, Burbank defeated the Falcons in their final head-to-head race, the CIF Southern Section Division 1 finals. Perhaps the greatest thing that happened to the team was the fact that star runner Mckynzee Kelley was able to survive a terrible car accident and actually return to the team. With a strong group of runners led by Kelley, Megan LaCamera, Elin Markarian, Zoe Zeron and Noela Kim, Burbank should be ready for another fine year in 2020.

Kiara Hernandez of Burbank High

No. 8 Burbank girls golf

The Bulldogs gave traditional power Arcadia a run for its money in the Pacific League title chase, only to come up just six strokes short at Brookside Golf Course. Burbank was led most of the season by freshman Lisette Orellana. The Bulldogs finished 11th in the tough Eastern Division in CIF competition and won the Optimist Tournament. In dual meet competition, Burbank posted a 28-7 season record. Sophomore star Kiara Hernandez joined the team late in the season after transferring from Burroughs. With her returning for the next two seasons, there is lots of reason for Burbank to be optimistic about the future.

No. 9 Burbank boys track and field

The Bulldogs came just one event away from winning the Pacific League dual meet title. Burbank had a solid group across the board and many return for 2020. Sprinters Bryan David and Jack Sapyta, middle distance runner Mher Matesvoyan and distance runners Victor Goli and Andres Leon led the way.

No. 10 Burroughs boys water polo

The Indians didn’t have a great regular season, finishing fourth in the Pacific League. But Burroughs earned itself onto this list because of its postseason play. Burroughs earned two CIF Southern Section playoff victories and nearly pulled off an upset of second seeded St. Francis in the quarterfinals, losing 9-8. Vahagan Sahakyan was one of the Indians’ key players.