By Dick Dornan
MyBurbank Sports Editor
“Burroughs beat Burroughs first half; Burroughs beat Crescenta Valley second half.”
Burroughs coach Keith Knoop told his team those words immediately after the game and received a loud approval. The Indians had just completed an epic comeback rallying from a 17-3 fourth quarter deficit scoring three touchdowns in the final six minutes of the game to pull out a remarkable 24-17 win.
#speechless #breathtaking #unbelievable #refusetolose #heart #WOW #Burroughsfootball.
In the world of twitter, Burroughs (3-2, 2-0) was trending in a superlative way last night during the fourth quarter at Memorial Field and they deserved every hash tag that came their way.
Aidan Anding’s 37-yard touchdown reception with 53 seconds left broke a 17-17 tie and gave the Indians a win that seemed highly unlikely as each minute passed.
Trailing 17-0 at halftime, the Indians regrouped and got the job done.
“I put on the board CV can’t beat Burroughs; Burroughs can beat Burroughs; but CV can’t beat you,” said Knoop. “So what are you going to do in the second half? And I walked out.”
Actions often speak louder than words but in this case the words left on the board by Knoop resonated throughout the locker room.
With Crescenta Valley (4-1, 1-1) trying every trick play in the book including the ole ‘Statue of Liberty’ play, Burroughs devoted itself to playing smash-mouth football and pounding sand.
“I just decided to get them in all tight and put some big dudes in the backfield and let’s go pound some sand,” Knoop said.
“It was way better than the first I can tell you that,” Indians offensive lineman Andrew Mills added with a slight chuckle. “Coach told us at halftime we need to get out there and play the second half the way we know we could. We came out and just pounded sand.”
A 16-play drive to begin the second half resulted in only a 22-yard field goal by Andres Aguilar but more importantly set the tone for the Indians. After eight consecutive runs by Javier Pineda, Aguilar put the Indians on the board for the first time.
“It’s great that coach has the confidence in me to get it going,” said Pineda, who gained 143 yards on 21 carries including 120 in the second half.
Despite having two touchdown passes called back because of penalties and a safety nullified by a CV illegal procedure, the Indians dug deep and willed their way to the win.
Pineda’s 25-yard touchdown run up the middle of the Falcon defense cut the deficit to 17-10 with 6:08 remaining.
On the ensuing CV possession, the Indians’ Steven Santeliz intercepted a pass that deflected off two other players giving JBHS possession on its 45-yard line.
Two plays later, Pineda was off to the races again sprinting 57 yards up the Crescenta Valley sideline to tie the game at 17 apiece at the 4:06 mark.
“It was amazing. The line was blocking perfect. I found the holes and it all came to life at the end,” Pineda said. “It was huge. We can’t lose anymore. We want to win a league championship.”
As the crowd noise grew louder and the Indians played with more energy and confidence, CV began to crumble under the pressure of the moment.
Anding’s heroics took place shortly after the CV punter mishandled a snap and punted a low line-drive kick that set up Burroughs for the game-winning drive on the Falcon 37 yard line.
Quarterback Andrew Williams took a three-step drop and fired a slant pass to Anding who split the heart of the CV defense and ran to pay dirt untouched.
“It was just a mini-screen to me. I just followed my blocker up front and went in,” Anding explained after the game amidst a sea of exhilarated Burroughs fans. “It felt great. I was super excited. It was so awesome coming back against them.”
Williams completed nine of 18 passes for 99 yards and the all-important 37-yard TD pass to Anding. Michael Ospina rushed for 81 yards on 13 carries.
Burroughs now faces defending league champion Muir on Friday at Memorial Field at 7 p.m. A huge task will be at hand but a win like last night could be just what the doctored ordered in the Indians’ quest to win a league title. The Indians remain tied for first with Muir and Burbank at 2-0 in the Pacific League.
“We were huge underdogs,” Knoop said. “People were saying we couldn’t play defense. And that our offense wasn’t as good as CV’s. But we did what we had to do tonight on both sides of the ball.”