If there was one surprise to take away from the Burroughs versus Burbank boys’ volleyball match Tuesday night, it was that Burbank was much better than everyone expected and Burroughs was far worse than expected.
However the Bears still came out on top in the end, winning 25-23, 25-22, 19-25, 25-18 at Burbank High.
Burroughs coach Joel Brinton noted that his team had 22 serving errors and 29 hitting errors in what was the Bears’ season opener. Burroughs has had problems with rain in its gymnasium. The Bears also had to cancel another league match because of a referee shortage.
“For whatever reason we are still in the process of learning how to be the best version of ourselves,” said Brinton who has led his program to 13 consecutive Pacific League titles. “In the fourth set was awesome to see, it was like here we are. We are young. Maybe it had something to do with this Burbank-Burroughs thing, but it was definitely unlike ourselves.”
Burbank (4-12, 0-3 in league) came out fired up as it was playing at home and was trying to break an eight-match losing streak.
“From when I took over the program last year and had to learn how everybody played, I came into this season teaching them that we are talented, we are athletic, we can compete with these teams,” second-year Burbank coach James Cowart, a former Bulldog, said. “I’m really proud of my boys today. This is our first set of a win against Burroughs and my first win as a player and a coach against Burroughs.”
Burroughs (4-5, 1-0 in league) was able to barely pull out the first set win thanks to a late pair of aces by Andy Zeytounian.
Things didn’t get any better in the second set, as Burbank jumped out a 14-7. Burroughs eventually tied things at 19 on a kill by Benji Ly.
Mark Hopkins, who led Burroughs with 10 kills, also put away a ball to make it 22-20.
Burbank’s Ryan Viyar had a kill to make it 24-21, before a serving error gave the Bears the second game.
The Bulldogs got a fine effort from Austin Kim, whose block sealed the third set. Kim finished with three kills.
Burroughs played much more like its normal self in the fourth game, leading virtually the entire way.
Christian Lim had 31 assists for Burroughs. Burbank received six kills each from Viyard and Sam Jurman. Noah Lingtag and Taiyo Nakao each had four kills for the Bulldogs.