Late Goal Powers Burroughs Boys’ Water Polo Past Crescenta Valley

Bears receive last-minute score from Siegel to earn hard-fought 10-9 Pacific League home win against Falcons.

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(Photo by Austin Gebhardt)

Competing in close Pacific League matches seems to be the norm of late for the Burroughs High boys’ water polo team.

Particularly while in the confines of its own pool deck.

Burroughs found itself in another tight match when it faced Crescenta Valley in a league match Tuesday.

Burroughs prevailed late, receiving a last-minute goal from Harrison Siegel to register a wild 10-9 victory.

“Games against Crescenta Valley are always tough,” Burroughs assistant coach Martin Ortega-Jennison said. “[Crescenta Valley coach] Jan Sakonju and his players always challenge you and force you to play intelligently. Everything happens when you play them.

“It came down to the end of the game again and we were able to get the win.”

Siegel recorded the winning goal with 47.1 seconds left in the fourth quarter to spark the Bears (11-9, 4-1 in league). The Falcons (13-13, 3-2) had two opportunities to even the match before the Bears held on.

“We wanted to get to 4-1 in league and give ourselves a chance to move up,” said Siegel, whose team notched an 11-9 overtime home league win against Hoover on Oct. 3. “We have been practicing hard and today was a reflection of that.

“On the winning goal, I had a bit of an advantage and got the shot off.”

The Bears took a 9-7 lead on a goal by Aiden Means with 4:47 to go in the fourth quarter. Crescenta Valley pulled to within 9-8 when Edgar Galstyan scored with 4:21 left before tying it at 9 on a tally by Alex Movsesyan with 2:04 to play.

Siegel broke the deadlock in the ensuing moments.

“He knows where to shoot and he’s got the experience,” Ortega-Jennison said of Siegel.

The Bears and Falcons were tied at 3 after the first quarter before Burroughs held a 6-5 lead at halftime. The Bears led, 8-7, after the third quarter.

Burroughs received two goals from Siegel, Dean Yuzna and Ian Duffield. Nicola Nasev, Logan Turla, Tyler Jones and Means each had one goal for the Bears.

Daron Alexanians, Sebastian Rivera and Levon Babayan scored two goals apiece for Crescenta Valley.

Burroughs will take on Muir in a league home match at 3:45 p.m. Thursday. Muir captured the CIF Southern Section Division VI crown last season.