Tag Archives: Bella Lomet

Burroughs Girls Volleyball Tested By Rival Burbank, Victorious In Four Sets

By Rick Assad

With nearly two sets completed, the Burroughs High girls’ volleyball team had its back against the wall against longtime rival Burbank.

The Bulldogs were ahead 24-21 in the second set and one more point would give the visitors a two games to none lead in this Pacific League match.

Quicker than a blink of an eye, the Indians rallied and tallied five straight points and evened it at one set each and then took the next two games for a 15-25, 26-24, 25-16, 25-10 triumph on Thursday night and capped the league undefeated.

Catie Virtue is seen digging a ball for Burroughs, which held off Burbank in four sets. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Two days earlier, Burroughs claimed their third consecutive league banner and now await this weekend’s pairings and seedings from the CIF Southern Section.

“We don’t give up, that’s for sure,” longtime Burroughs coach Edwin Real said. “We’ve come back against teams this year, so we’ve been there. We weren’t panicked.”

What did Real tell the team after losing the first set? “I told them we’re going to be just fine. Just stay calm and composed,” he said.

Burroughs (18-5 and 14-0 in league) sprinted to a 5-3 lead on a kill from senior middle blocker Camila Sanchez-Tellez.

“It feels great. It was on our whiteboard. We could have very easily said we won the league at 13-1, but the girls wanted to go undefeated,” Real said of Thursday’s motivation.

The Bulldogs are about to return the ball to the Indians’ side. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank (13-16 and 8-6 for fourth place in league) evened it at 7-7 on a service ace from senior setter Ashley Eskander.

“I think we just got a little bit in our heads,” said Eskander, who finished with 27 assists, nine digs, seven kills and five aces. “I think the crowd kind of just got to us and we made silly mistakes, and they came out strong and they just pushed us.”

Eskander continued: “I think we came out stronger than we ever did before,” she noted. “And that worked to our advantage. I definitely think we’re in the underdog situation and we have that nothing to lose mentality. We fought and we played our game.”

A push from senior outside hitter Lydia Grote, who had a match-best 23 kills with two blocks, gave the Indians, who have defeated the Bulldogs 10 straight matches, an 11-8 lead.

A kill from sophomore defensive specialist Charlotte Hobson (nine digs and two aces) made it 15-13, but Burbank evened it at 17-17 on a spike from junior opposite hitter Tamryn Betts.

The Indians are ready for the Bulldogs’ serve. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“I thought we were passing pretty well. I thought our swings were in all rhythm and moving the ball around,” Burbank coach Karl Rojo said. “Everything was flowing well as a team in that first set. It was a little heartbreaking losing that second set, but I thought we rolled over any mistakes that we made in the third set.”

The Bulldogs then outscored the Indians 4-1, that included an ace from senior outside hitter Katie Treadway.

“When I see everyone giving 100 percent effort, even of we make little mistakes, honestly, it’s fulfilling and I feel proud of my team and it feels good,” said Treadway, who ended the match with 13 digs, six kills and three aces. “Sometimes it’s hard to get everyone on the same page and get the same energy. But we try our best to keep everyone engaged, to keep everyone in the game, but sometimes it gets a little messy.”

Treadway’s bullet made it 24-21, but Burroughs went on a 5-0 blitz with junior outside hitter Catie Virtue (eight kills) collecting three spikes while sophomore middle blocker Bella Lomet added a kill and a block that sealed the set.

The first set was tied 1-1, 2-2, 3-3, 4-4, but the Bulldogs marched in front 9-5 on Treadway’s kill.

Another laser from Treadway pushed the lead to 14-6 and a blast from junior middle blocker Bianca Hudson (five kills) made it 16-8.

Katie Treadway finished with 13 digs and six kills for Burbank. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Senior middle blocker Leah Tawil (six kills with two blocks) added a dagger as the Bulldogs led 18-10 and it became 22-13 on a push from Eskander.

Treadway’s bullet made it 23-15 and when Grote’s ball sailed out of bounds, Burbank led 24-15. Grote’s swing then hit the net for the final point.

Like the initial frame, the third set was tight early with the score being knotted 1-1, 2-2 and 3-3 before the Indians seized control 7-5 on a stuff from junior outside hitter Camila Palma.

A tapper from Virtue made it 10-7 as the Bulldogs needed time out. Virtue’s back-to-back kills made it 12-9.

Grote’s tapper pushed the margin to 15-12 and four kills and a block by Grote made it 22-13. Grote’s kill gave the Indians a 24-14 lead and an errant serve secured the set.

The fourth set was runaway from the outset as the Indians led 8-1 on Grote’s stuff. A kill from sophomore setter Meagan Lynch made it 11-2.

Virtue’s spike saw the Indians dart ahead 16-4 and Palma’s winner made it 18-4 as the Bulldogs needed time.

Palma’s kill extended Burroughs’ lead to 19-7 and Grote’s kill made it 21-8. Another kill from Grote gave the Indians a 23-9 edge and a kill from senior opposite hitter Joelle Burras delivered Burroughs the set and match with an ace.

Senior libero/defensive specialist Morgan Bolger contributed 11 digs for the Bulldogs.

Burroughs Girls Volleyball Defeats Arcadia, Wins Pacific League Title

By Rick Assad

In the athletic arena, nothing is ever given, but rather it’s earned, and for the third consecutive season, the Burroughs High girls’ volleyball team claimed the Pacific League championship.

The scores were 25-15, 25-20, 25-22 over visiting Arcadia on Tuesday afternoon, and now the Indians will prepare for a second and final meeting when hosting Burbank on Thursday night at 6 p.m.

This weekend, the CIF Southern Section will announce its pairings and seedings for the following week’s playoff matches and Burroughs should receive a first-round home match.

Lydia Grote finished with 12 kills in a victory over Arcadia. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

What it boiled down for Burroughs these three years of league dominance is talent, hard work in practice and being able to mesh together as a team during the games.

“Our players, from beginning to the end on the bench, we have good players. We can inter-change them and move them around and it’s very helpful,” Burroughs coach Edwin Real said of his squad. “It really helps out in practice. In practice we can push each other and reach a higher level and then when it comes to game time, we can mix kids and it makes it real easy.”

Real, in his 16th season at the Indians leader, added: “Passing was better,” he pointed out. “Even at times when  we struggled, we still kept composed. We just trust each other that we’re going to get the job done.”

The Apaches (20-11 and 10-3 in league) can finish tied for second place with a victory at home against Crescenta Valley on Thursday.

Senior setter Milana Abrahamian passing the ball during a sweep over the Apaches. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs’ top offensive stars were on the money as they combined for 34 kills.

Senior outside hitter Lydia Grote and junior outside hitter Catie Virtue each tallied 12 kills, while senior middle blocker Camila Sanchez-Tellez added 10.

The early portion of the initial set was extremely close and it included being deadlocked at 1-1, 2-2, 3-3, 5-5 and 6-6 before the Indians surged in front 7-6 on a hitting error by the Apaches, who brought up two players from the junior varsity.

Burroughs (16-5 and 13-0 in league) then pulled in front 10-8 on Grote’s kill and led 12-8 on sophomore middle blocker Bella Lomet’s spike as Arcadia asked for time.

The Indians’ advantage became 14-10 on Grote’s winner and 16-10 on a laser from senior opposite hitter Joelle Burras.

Charlotte Hobson digging one out in a match versus Arcadia, which clinched a third straight Pacific League title for the Indians. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Back-to-back service aces from Burroughs senior setter Milana Abrahamian made it 18-10 as the Apaches requested a break in the action.

“Serving tough is definitely something that a team needs and I feel like when you get a big lead, it’s good for the whole team and keeps the energy alive,” she said.

Abrahamian spoke about the upcoming postseason and hopefully advancing to the title match.

“It’s definitely a goal we have this season,” she said. “We’re trying to get past quarterfinals and we want to make it to the top. Our whole team wants that. If we’re all on our game, we can make it all the way. If we just play our game, we’re unstoppable.”

Virtue’s kill made it 20-11 and Sanchez-Tellez’s winner saw the Indians sprint ahead 22-13.

Two at the net ready for a stuff for Burroughs. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“I really think our wins are a team effort,” Virtue said. “So whatever I can contribute, I’m happy to contribute. Lydia can come in with all these numbers and it’s all great. I can come in with all these numbers and it’s all great, but either way we all support each other as a team.”

Virtue’s two consecutive kills made it 24-14 and when Arcadia junior Angela Zhou’s attempt hit the net, the Indians won the opening frame.

The second stanza began with the Apaches taking a 4-1 lead on a tapper from junior Alexandra Bierotte.

Arcadia’s advantage swelled to 9-5 on a kill senior Shayli Johnson. Burroughs chopped the advantage to 12-10 on Grote’s winner and evened it at 13-13 on an ace from junior defensive specialist Lily Rogers.

When Virtue added a kill, the Indians darted ahead 15-13 as the Apaches needed time to gather their thoughts.

Camila Sanchez-Tellez contributed 10 kills for the Indians. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Virtue said she has high hopes for the playoffs.

“I really think what’s different about this year is we don’t really rely on just one player,” she said. “We spread out whoever is bringing in a lot of points. Our defense is very consistent on top of really very skilled hitters. The fact that we’re really well-rounded makes us probably one of the best teams in the program.”

Virtue went on: “No matter what happens we’re going out swinging. We’re going to fight to the end and I really think we can get a ring,” she said.

Consecutive aces by Rogers made it 17-13 and a push from Virtue shoved the Indians ahead 20-16.

A co-stuff by Virtue and junior outside hitter Mariah Bowman made it 21-17. A kill from junior middle blocker Emily Caneday saw the Apaches seek a time out as the lead ballooned to 23-19.

Virtue’s kill made it 24-19 and Virtue’s service ace had the Indians knocking on the door at 24-20. Grote’s kill was the set-clincher.

In the third and final set, Arcadia dominated the early action as the Apaches led 5-1 on a block from senior Monet Latunde and were ahead 9-4 on an ace from senior Cate Ruiz.

“I think the losses were really good for us just because we’re a young team. So a lot of the kids are going to come back next year,” Arcadia first-year coach Stephen Bernabe said. “So this is more about growth in the bigger picture. For a team like Burroughs, with a lot of seniors who can put the ball down, it’s good for me to see our youth be able to pass the ball back up, rally, and even though we lost in three, our scores kept on getting better, so I know that the kids are reading better.”

Burroughs came within 14-11 on a blast from Grote as Arcadia asked for another stoppage in time. The Indians outscored the Apaches 7-4 and evened it at 18-18 on Virtue’s kill.

It was knotted at 19-19 on Virtue’s spike, but Arcadia then surged ahead 20-19 on Johnson’s rocket.

Arcadia sophomore Ashley Marrone played well. “Last year we lost all of our seniors who were really tall, so we kind of turned out to be a little shorter,” she said. “Some things I like about this team are we strive to be better, we have high energy, we keep each other up and we have great sportsmanship.”

Marrone added: “Today I felt we did really great, but there were some things we could have fixed like our passing,” she noted. “We were kind of lazy about that. For future teams I do think we’re going to be improved.”

Sophomore setter Meghan Lynch tossed in a push for the Indians that tied it at 20-20 and Virtue’s kill evened it at 21-21.

When Johnson’s swing hit the net, Burroughs led 22-21 as Arcadia requested a time out.

Virtue’s mishit leveled it at 22-22, but Grote scored the next three points with a kill, a block and a kill for the set and match.

Burroughs Girls Volleyball Drops First Set, Wins Next Three Versus Crescenta Valley

By Rick Assad

Before the second set began, Burroughs High outside hitter Lydia Grote went over and gave a high five and said words of encouragement to the other five teammates on the court.

Though the Indians were down a game, this wasn’t something that Grote was overly concerned with, but still wanted to inspire her team and exhibit leadership.

Meagan Lynch is about to serve in a four-set win over visiting Crescenta Valley. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Looking back, this small gesture by Grote may have ignited the comeback by Burroughs over visiting Crescenta Valley in a Pacific League showdown as it went on a took the next three sets and captured a 20-25, 25-20, 25-8, 25-10 decision in a girls’ volleyball match on Tuesday.

With a victory over Muir at home on Thursday, Burroughs will have secured at least a share of yet another league banner.

The second set commenced with a co-stuff from Burroughs sophomore middle blocker Bella Lomet and Grote that made it 5-1.

“On the first set it was anyone’s game. It wasn’t our game, but it also wasn’t their game,” said Grote, a senior who will attend and play women’s volleyball for UC Berkeley and who had a match-best 14 kills with two blocks.

“We were just here to play and we really had to think about what we have to do to play better on our side of the court,” Grote added. “We can’t control their side of the court.”

Camila Sanchez-Tellez (No. 5) is about to try and block an attempt against the Falcons. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Junior outside hitter Catie Virtue’s spike made it 8-3 and when Virtue (11 kills) added another winner, Burroughs’ lead ballooned to 13-8.

A laser from senior middle blocker Camila Sanchez-Tellez (11 kills) made it 15-10.

Grote’s kill pushed Burroughs’ cushion to 18-15.

Virtue’s dagger made it 20-17 and Sanchez-Tellez’s kill gave the Indians a 22-18 lead.

“We were very inconsistent. It’s frustrating,” Burroughs coach Edwin Real said of the initial set, which could have gone either way. “Communication was not very good for us. Actually it was very poor. When you play well, you communicate better.”

A jam from Sanchez-Tellez handed the Indians a 23-19 advantage and a service ace from Virtue saw Burroughs extend its lead to 24-19. Sanchez-Tellez’s missile was the set-winner and evened it at one game each.

Sanchez-Tellez’s kill in the third set delivered Burroughs a 2-0 lead and Grote’s string of three kills pushed the margin to 7-5.

It’s a meeting at the summit when Burroughs faces Crescenta Valley. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

A co-stuff from junior defensive specialist Lily Rogers (five aces) and Lomet made it 10-6 as Crescenta Valley, which is tied with Arcadia for second place in league, asked for time.

A service winner from Rogers saw the Indians race to a 12-6 lead and a tapper from sophomore setter Meagan Lynch pushed it to 14-7 as the Falcons (32-10 and 9-2 in league) once again requested time out.

Sanchez-Tellez’s kill then increased the lead for Burroughs to 18-7 and Virtue’s spike made it 21-7.

Virtue’s sledge hammer made it 24-8 and junior outside hitter Mariah Bowman’s spike sealed the game.

In the fourth set, the Indians bolted out to a 4-2 lead on Grote’s kill. Lomet’s sizzler made it 6-3 and Sanchez-Tellez’s tapper increased the edge to 11-6 as the Falcons needed yet another respite.

The Indians rallied to claim the last three sets and won the match. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Sanchez-Tellez’s tapper and kill shoved the Indians in front 13-9 and Virtue’s smash made it 18-10.

The Indians (14-4 and 11-0 in league) then scored the next seven points that included an ace from Virtue that made it 21-10 and Virtue’s service winner that clinched the set and match.

The initial set was even at 1-1, 2-2 and 3-3 before the Falcons emerged with an 8-3 lead on a kill from senior outside hitter Lizzy Kerman.

But the Indians responded and evened it up at 10-10 on an ace from sophomore defensive specialist Charlotte Hobson (five aces).

Crescenta Valley surged in front 15-11 on an ace from sophomore setter Sydney Postelwaite, however, a kill from Virtue sliced the lead to 16-12.

When Virtue’s ball sailed out of bounds, the Falcons led 2-14 as the Indians asked for a halt in the action.

“We really struggled to pass all night and when you can’t pass, it’s tough to do anything else,” Crescenta Valley coach Matt Simons said. “The girls, they’re amped up for this game. They know Burroughs is the league champs and in first place.”

Simons continued: “When things didn’t go our way, it was really tough to dig ourselves out of that hole,” he explained. “We weren’t in the best mental state all night. When Burroughs struggled in game one, they had the same positive minds all the way through. When we struggled, which we’re bound to do in a close match, we almost tried to press harder and harder. Mentally we dug ourselves more of a hole.”

A spike from junior outside hitter Jamie Santos (seven kills) made it 22-16 in favor of the Falcons.

A tapper from Kerman (team-best 12 kills with seven digs and two aces) had Crescenta Valley ahead 24-17 and a joint-block from senior setter/opposite hitter Isabella Doom and senior middle blocker Ellie Song (five kills) sewed up the set.

Burbank, Burroughs Girls Volleyball Poised For Success

By Rick Assad

 

Getting to and then advancing deep into the CIF Southern Section playoffs is always a top priority for any coach.

This being the case, it’s crucial for the team to do extremely well in the Pacific League because this is how the selection committee places seeds the squads in the postseason.

So for the Burroughs High and Burbank girls’ volleyball teams, each wants to finish as high as possible in the league standings.

The Burbank girls volleyball team in a recent practice. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Indians, who are coming off a 27-8 overall season and a 13-1 mark in league for a share of the title, always have high expectations.

Longtime Burroughs Coach Edwin Real is optimistic.

“We’re expecting to be competitive,” he said of the league season. “We have some kids who are somewhat younger and we lost several really good players to graduation and we’re trying to get better in those positions.”

A season ago, the Indians advanced to the Division III quarterfinals where they lost to eventual champion Village Christian in five tough sets.

This campaign, Burroughs is 2-1, having beaten Downey and Harvard-Westlake, but losing in five sets to Cypress, in tournament matches, which required three sets in order to determine a winner and not the customary two.

The Indians will pay a visit to Burbank on September 24 and then host the rival Bulldogs on October 17.

Spearheading the Indians will be senior outside hitter Lydia Grote, who has verbally committed to play volleyball for the University of California at Berkeley.

Grote’s older sister, Marin, is a sophomore on the University of Washington women’s volleyball team, and before that was a key cog and four-year starter for Burroughs.

Burroughs, which lost to Village Christian in a CIF quarterfinal match in 2018, is going to be one of the favorites to win the Pacific League. (Photo by © Ross A Benson)

Also key for the Indians will be junior defensive specialist Lily Rogers, who will be a floor leader and an important contributor.

Junior outside hitter Catie Virtue will also be asked to lead the troops, while senior middle blocker Camila Sanchez-Tellez as well as two sophomores, setter Meagan Lynch and defensive specialist Charlotte Hobson, will be vital if Burroughs is to go far, according to Real.

There are several other upperclassmen who will also have a significant hand in the team’s success and they are opposite hitter Joelle Burras, setter Milana Abrahamian and defensive specialist Natalie Hooper.

The rest of the team includes junior middle blocker Emily Caneday, junior outside hitter Camila Palma, junior outside hitter Mariah Bowman and junior defensive specialist Reese Coblentz.

Being in tip-top shape is always a key to winning. Here the Bulldog girls’ volleyball team is racing down the floor. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Rounding out the Indians’ squad will be sophomore defensive specialist Kylie Colton and middle blocker Bella Lomet.

This is Karl Rojo’s fifth season as Burbank’s coach and in the four previous campaigns, saw his squad make the postseason.

“I believe it’s going to be a good season, almost similar to the one before and maybe better than that,” Rojo said. “With the core that we have, they’re pretty experienced and with the young core that we have, they’re learning a lot from the experienced players. It’s working out pretty fine. They’re working hard each day and that’s all I can ask from them.”

Rojo then added: “They’re improving. It could be small improvement. It could be big improvement, but they’re improving,” he said.

Rojo said he likes the attitude of this squad. “They’re all good teammates towards each other,” he said. “But I think it’s drama-free. Not as much drama. It’s going to be positive.”

Burbank posted a 14-16 record and a 9-5 mark in league, but Rojo would like to see definite improvement on those numbers.

Lydia Grote, a senior outside hitter for the Indians, will be one of many weapons. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“I see us making a big statement in the Pacific League,” he said. “I think we should finish in the top three. But we have a lot of competitive teams. I think we’ll proceed past the first round this year.”

There is enough talent to reach the playoffs according to Rojo and several mainstays will have to play well.

The Bulldogs are 1-3 this season with a sweep over visiting Chatsworth and losses to visiting Providence in four sets, a four-game loss at Saugus and a three-set defeat at Calabasas.

Burbank was swept over three games in a Division IV wildcard match in 2018 against host Calabasas.

Burbank’s top-shelf players are senior outside hitter Katie Treadway, senior libero/defensive specialist Morgan Bolger, senior middle blocker Leah Tawil, senior setter Ashley Eskander, junior middle blocker Bianca Hudson and junior libero Mikayla Kim.

Also expected to contribute for the Bulldogs will be senior setter Kassandra Gonzalez, senior middle blocker/opposite hitter Ava Danesh, senior outside hitter Brandice Hibbard and senior opposite hitter/setter Andrea Paun.

The remainder of the team includes junior opposite hitter Tamryn Betts, sophomore outside hitter Alaina Melgar and sophomore middle blocker/opposite hitter Gabriella Damroze.