It wasn’t a problem for the Burbank High football team to move the ball up and down the field.
Finishing drives and piling up points proved to be its bane.
Burbank committed four turnovers and couldn’t convert on four red-zone opportunities en route to a 21-7 Pacific League road defeat against Muir on Thursday.
The loss also might have likely knocked the Bulldogs (3-6, 1-3 in league) out of the postseason hunt, further leaving them frustrated with a meeting on deck against cross-town rival Burroughs.
“We missed four red-zone opportunities and you can’t do that against a team like Muir,” Burbank coach Adam Colman said. “You’re just not going to win doing that. It was a combination of things, like false-start penalties, missed coverage assignments and dropped passes. It’s on us. You have to capitalize on your chances. Muir had three chances and they scored all three times.”
Muir (4-5, 3-1) intercepted two passes and recovered two fumbles, with the last turnover occurring on a fumble at the Muir 15-yard line with less than three minutes remaining in the fourth quarter and Burbank looking to go ahead.
Muir opened the scoring when Mark Anderson recovered a fumble near midfield following a sack of Burbank quarterback Dylan Robinson near midfield and returned it 45 yards for a touchdown to make it 6-0 with 8:57 remaining in the first quarter.
Burbank took a 7-6 lead on a five-yard touchdown run by Robinson with 11.6 seconds to go in the first quarter.
The Mustangs, who haven’t lost to the Bulldogs since 2018, extended the lead to 13-7 on a two-yard touchdown run from Jachai Pulley with 1:39 left in the second quarter.
Then Burbank encountered difficulty on its ensuing possessions deep in Muir territory.
The Bulldogs moved into the red zone before a sack moved them outside. leading to a 44-yard field goal attempt by Chris Aguirre falling short as time expired in the first half.
Looking to regroup, Burbank had two first-and-goal chances in the third quarter.
On fourth and goal on the Muir 8-yard line, Robinson was sacked on the 19-yard line with 7:35 left. On their next possession, Muir blocked a 26-yard field-goal attempt by Aguirre with 5.1 seconds to go.
Burbank had one last final scoring opportunity that was turned aside by Muir in the closing minutes in the fourth quarter. Muir’s Turran Williams stripped the ball from Burbank’s Jacob Mendieta with 2:26 to play.
Muir closed out the scoring on an 83-yard touchdown pass from Brandon Valencia to Williams with 1:22 remaining.
Robinson, who completed seven of 17 passes for 86 yards, said the Bulldogs couldn’t cash in on their drives.
“We did everything right, but we couldn’t score,” said Robinson, a senior. “It comes down to the nitty gritty on those drives and they stripped the ball away on the last drive. It comes down to the smallest details and [Muir] pulled the ball away on that last drive. We needed to be able to finish and we couldn’t.”
Mendieta finished with 44 yards rushing in 11 carries.
Valencia completed seven of 16 passes for 162 yards.
Burbank, which will face Burroughs at 7 p.m. Oct. 28 in the “Big Game” at Memorial Field, entered play Thursday tied for fourth with Arcadia in league. The top three teams in league qualify for the CIF playoffs in November.