Burbank Softball Head Coach Melissa Sanchez Resigns Position

The former Burbank High softball player and coach was at the helm for five seasons.

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Maddison Kellogg is one of the standouts coached by Melissa Sanchez, who resigned as Burbank's head coach. (Photo by Austin Gebhardt)

By Rick Assad

After five seasons as the Burbank High softball coach, Melissa Sanchez, a onetime Bulldog player, resigned on Tuesday.

Under Sanchez’s guidance the Bulldogs had three winning seasons by winning percentage and made the CIF Southern Section playoffs four times.

“With a heavy heart, I resigned my coaching position at Burbank High School,” Sanchez said. “Reflecting on the immense gratitude I feel for the incredible experience I’ve had. From the talented athletes to the competitive games, wins and losses, I’ve formed unforgettable bonds with my coaches, athletic directors, and players, making this journey special.”

Sanchez added: “This Burbank softball program has given me many memories that I get to cherish forever,” she said. “Every girl that has been a part of my program over the past five years has shaped me into the coach I am today, and for that, I’m eternally grateful. I thank the parents, athletic directors, coaching staff, boosters, and fans who have supported me throughout my tenure – their contributions have made this experience truly unforgettable. As I move forward, I will always be a proud Bulldog at heart.”

In the most recent season, Burbank went 12-13 with a 5-2 mark in the Pacific League and lost in the Division IV opening-round to Paraclete 12-2.

The Bulldogs were 53-55-1 in all games played and carved out a 24-21 record in the league with Sanchez at the helm.

Burbank Athletic Director Alli McKain was sad to see Sanchez leave but is grateful for her time leading the program.

“It is amazing to think about the number of female athletes Coach Meli has positively impacted, not only through skill acquisition, but also from the life lessons her players have learned during her instructional time that include resilience, good decision-making, self-accountability, and character development,” she said.

Melissa Sanchez played for the Bulldogs and coached the team for five seasons. (Photo courtesy Melissa Sanchez)

McKain spoke about what Sanchez did for the program.

“Coach Meli is a graduate of Burbank High School, and she will be greatly missed in our softball program. She has been wonderful for both our program and our school, representing pride and excellence in all that she does,” she noted. “Coach Meli will continue to help, support, and provide guidance during Burbank’s softball coaching transition.”

McKain said that a qualified coach will take over for Sanchez.

“Our school site has already begun the start of what will be an extensive search for a highly qualified softball coach – one who will connect with players and provide the leadership of a successful program,” she said.

Though Sanchez will no longer be in the Bulldogs’ dugout, she has left an imprint.

“I look forward to seeing Coach Meli at McCambridge Park, where she spends her evenings coaching travel softball. Coach Meli is well known in the Burbank community for having a true love and passion for the game,” McKain said. “She has been a role model for many aspiring young players, and she will continue to be that. No matter what softball field Coach Meli is on, one thing she has made evidently clear is that she will always be a Bulldog.”

Sanchez took over when Mike Delaney resigned and saw Burbank post a 4-3-1 mark and a 1-1 in league record during COVID-19.

In Sanchez’s second season, the Bulldogs went 11-10 and 4-5 in league play and advanced to the second round of the Division V playoffs after beating Coast Union but losing to Santa Clara 7-3.

In Sanchez’s third season, Burbank went 12-17 and 5-8 in league and lost to Temple City 1-0 in a Division IV playoff game.

Two seasons ago, Burbank went 14-12 in all games and 4-5 in league play and fell to Fillmore 6-3 in a Division IV clash.