Burroughs Girls Water Polo Races To 18-6 Victory Over Glendale

Senior Nancy Baylor's match-best eight goals pace the Bears and Ava Tomlinson adds four tallies while goal tender Mindy Hernandez is stellar in the net.

Nancy Baylor led Burroughs with a match-high eight goals in an 18-6 win over Glendale. (Photo by Austin Gebhardt)

By Rick Assad

Matters couldn’t have gone any smoother for the Burroughs High girls’ water polo team.

Getting points from five players, including senior Nancy Baylor, who tacked on a match-best eight goals and a stellar performance from goalie Mindy Hernandez, the Bears bulldozed past visiting Glendale 18-6 in a Pacific League game on Tuesday afternoon.

Baylor came out and knocked in two goals in the first quarter and two more in the next frame as Burroughs led 5-0 and 9-1 at halftime.

Baylor added two more goals in the third period as the Bears pulled away 14-3 and for good measure scored two goals in the fourth frame.

Baylor’s five-foot tally with 6:42 left made it 1-0 and her empty net point-blank goal with 3:12 left pushed the advantage to 4-0.

“It’s really nice to have an at-home win,” Baylor said of the lopsided victory. “The performance of the team is really coming together and our confidence is building as we get further into the season.”

Baylor, who will play for the University of Indiana women’s water polo team, said the Nitros tried to disrupt the Bears’ offense, but that didn’t pose any real difficulty.

“Glendale was crashing hard on set, but that opened up opportunities from the outside so we were able to get off some great perimeter shots,” she said. “We’re also protecting the ball really well and seeing opportunities as they develop. We’re all getting more confident and accurate with passing and shooting.”

Anastasia Zubkoff’s seven-foot goal with 5:23 left made it 2-0 as the Nitros requested a stoppage in time.

When Ava Tomlinson, who finished with four goals, drilled a five-footer with 4:15 left on the ticker, the Bears’ advantage became 3-0.

Tomlinson’s tally from 16 feet with 11 seconds left extended the lead to 5-0.

Mindy Hernandez, shown in a previous match, was outstanding versus visiting Glendale in a Pacific League match. (Photo by Austin Gebhardt)

The Nitros (8-11 and 1-1 in league) finally scored with 6:45 left in the second period by sophomore Jasper Starr on a seven-footer that sliced the lead to 5-1.

The Bears (8-5 and 2-0 in league) then reeled off four straight goals.

The first tally came from Tomlinson with 5:28 left for a 6-1 lead on an eight-footer.

That was followed by Baylor’s goal from seven feet for a 7-1 cushion with 3:52 left.

Baylor’s five-footer with 2:23 left became a seven-goal advantage for the hosts.

Audrey Willet contributed a point-blank empty netter with 1:08 left for a 9-1 lead for Burroughs, which outshot Glendale 18-8 in the first half and 17-14 in the second half.

The Nitros played much better in the second half as they scored five goals while allowing nine for the Bears.

Burroughs began the third period with Baylor scoring with 6:25 left on a point-blank attempt that made it 10-1 and Siahni Suarez from short range with 5:38 left for a 10-goal lead.

“Personally, for me, I was happy with my endurance level throughout the entire four quarters today,” Baylor said. “I never felt tired. I also felt like I made good contributions on defense.”

From this point, the Bears outscored the Nitros 3-2 for the rest of the period with Willet scoring on a five-footer with 4:46 left for a 12-2 edge and Willet’s 10-footer 42 seconds later that extended the lead to an 11-goal advantage.

Baylor’s 12-foot attempt with 1:05 left capped off the scoring for the Bears and made it 14-3.

Sophomore Inessa Khajehgian’s eight-foot tally with 5:25 left for Glendale made it 11-2 and Starr’s eight-footer with 1:32 remaining sliced the Bears’ lead to 13-3.

Baylor’s five-foot tally with 6:16 left in the fourth period made it 15-3 and Baylor’s point-blank shot with 57 seconds on the clock saw the Bears pull ahead 17-6.

Tomlinson’s eight-footer with 3:00 left made the advantage a 12-goal cushion and Zubkoff’s five-footer with 24 seconds on the ticker was the final tally for a 18-6 lead.

Khajehgian’s six-footer with 5:53 left in the fourth quarter cut the lead to 15-4 and Khajehgian’s six-footer with 2:15 remaining made it 16-5.

Glendale sophomore Ani Ttuyan’s five-footer with 1:52 on the clock trimmed the lead to a 10-goal deficit.