For now, the Burroughs High boys’ soccer team would like to get healthy and begin picking up victories in the Pacific League.
It hasn’t been easy on either front of late for the Bears, who are down to 14 players with league action having just begun. Some athletes have been battling illness, while others continue to recover from injuries.
Looking for a spark, Burroughs might have turned the corner after it battled to a 2-2 home league tie versus Hoover on Tuesday at Memorial Field.
Burroughs (4-3-1, 0-1-1 in league) scored two second-half goals to break out of its recent funk before Hoover (3-1-1, 1-0-1) tied the match with about six minutes remaining.
“I thought we were a lot better today, compared to our first league game Friday,” Burroughs first-year coach Makan Afzali said referring to a 4-0 home defeat against Glendale. “It’s been pretty tough because we are missing so many players.
“The one thing you learn is that you can’t control the injuries. You can control the way you play and I thought we were a lot better today. We also get to play teams in our league twice this year after just once last year, so we just want to get healthy and give ourselves a chance.”
Hoover held a 1-0 halftime advantage before Burroughs, which took third in league and reached the second round of the CIF Southern Section Division VI playoffs last season, scored two goals about four minutes apart to take the lead before Hoover closed out the scoring.
The Tornados took a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute when Anton Tsarukyan rolled a shot past Burroughs goalkeeper Christopher Reyes.
Hoover limited Burroughs to one shot on goal in the first half before the Burroughs regrouped in the second half.
Seeking a jolt in its quest to score a league goal, Burroughs finally solved Hoover on a goal by Alex Loera that beat Hoover goalkeeper David Ekimyan in the 63rd minute.
Looking to seize the momentum, Burroughs got a goal from Jose Ramos off a nifty pass from Mani Hooshivar to take a 2-1 lead in the 67th minute.
The Bears appeared to be on the doorstep to victory before Hoover tied it at 2 in the 74th minute.
“It was definitely a hard-fought and intense match,” Ramos said. “We knew it would be that way coming into the game.
“On my goal, you have to get inside the box and make something happen. Sometimes you have to be calculated a little bit. You have to be able to call for the ball and be in the right position.”
Burroughs had a final opportunity to take the lead before Ekimyan stopped Mario Herrera with about a minute left.
The Bears and Tornados will face each other again Jan. 17 at Hoover.
Burroughs will next meet Muir in a league road contest at 3:30 p.m. Friday.