It might be one of the biggest weeks in the career of veteran Burroughs High softball coach Doug Nicol.
Possibly an exciting one as well for Nicol, whose team inched closer to earning at least a share of the Pacific League championship for the first time since 2017.
Burroughs registered 13 hits and rolled to a convincing 12-0 league road victory against Crescenta Valley on Tuesday. The game was called after five innings because of the 10-run mercy rule.
“Hard to believe because it’s hard to win here,” Nicol said. “You take any kind of victory you can get here, whether it’s 1-0 or 12-0.
“It’s a very exciting week because you are playing teams like Crescenta Valley and Burbank with so much on the line. We were going through a bit of a mini slump last week with our bats. Today we were able to hit the ball on the ground and line drives. That’s the kind of hitting we need to have in order to win games.”
Burroughs (20-4, 8-1 in league) holds a half-game lead over Arcadia (7-1 in league). Burroughs, ranked No. 1 in CIF Southern Section Division IV, can wrap up a share of the league title with a road win against cross-town rival Burbank at McCambridge Park on Thursday. Arcadia has two games left against Crescenta Valley (13-9, 5-3).
The Bears, who posted a 6-4 home win against the Falcons at Olive Park on March 28, scored three runs in the third inning and six in the fourth to pull away Tuesday.
“I thought our energy was phenomenal,” said Burroughs starting pitcher Stevie Dabbadie, who recorded two hits at the plate and limited Crescenta Valley to one hit in the circle. “I think we were all feeding off it and everybody wanted to hit. We put the ball in play, we took advantage of the opportunities to hit and we were aggressive.
“I think it will give us a lot of momentum going into our next game. We’ll see what we can do then.”
Burroughs took a 1-0 lead in the first on an RBI single by Chloe Centeno. The Bears made it 2-0 in the second on an error by the first baseman.
Burroughs scored three runs in the third, capped by a two-run single by Lilly Lewis to make it 5-0.
In the fourth, Dabbadie had a two-run single to extend the advantage to 7-0. Phoebe Spangler later recorded a two-run single to make it 9-0 for Burroughs, which sent 10 batters to the plate in the inning.
Burroughs, which advanced to the Division IV semifinals last season, scored two runs in the fifth to cap the victory.
The Bears got two hits apiece from Gizelle Rangsiyawong, Dabbadie, Centeno, Spangler and Karlee Earl. Courtesy runner Eliza Torres scored three runs for Burroughs, which got two each from Spangler and Centeno.
The CIF Southern Section will unveil its playoff pairings for all seven divisions at 10 a.m. Saturday.