Tag Archives: Burroughs boys’ cross country

Burbank Cross Country Ready for Big Year

It is no secret that local cross country teams are continually competitive year in and year out.
But this year figures to a special one for the Burbank High boys’ team. There is no telling how good the Bulldogs can be. They return all seven of their varsity runners from league finals from a year ago and if healthy should finish their season in Fresno at the California State Championships. As hard as it might be to believe, Burbank’s boys’ team has actually never been to the state meet.

Burroughs, which won the CIF Southern Section Division 1 boys’ title in 2014, isn’t far behind.
Both the Burbank and Burroughs girls’ teams figure to fight for the Pacific League title after finishing first and second a year ago.

Burbank

The Bulldog boys’ team is looking to be healthy this year after struggling with that aspect a year ago.  The Bulldogs open the season ranked No. 3 in the CIF Southern Section Division 1 preseason poll. In track season, there were five Bulldogs who broke the 10-minute barrier in the 3,200 meters. This would be comparable to a starting five in basketball that all average in double figures in points.

Senior Victor Goli is coming off a fine track season after he was sick much of last cross country season.  Goli ran 4 minutes, 23.4 seconds in the 1,600 and 9:25.58 in the 3,200. Junior Andres Leon is running right alongside him. He went 4:26.81 and 9:42.18 as a sophomore.

Burbank High’s Victor Goli at the finish line last season.

Seniors Dayne Ellis (9:46.29), Anthony Chiaravalle (9:55.97) and Tadeh Shanazari (9:57.59) all went under 10 minutes in track. Senior Steve Wright (10:10.39) was not far behind. Junior Mher Matevosyan, who is a middle distance specialist, will also be in the running for a varsity spot. Matevosyan went 1:58.59 for 800 meters as a sophomore and 4:38.35 in the 1,600. Fellow junior Tyler Jenkins (4:42.05 and 10:07.77) should also see some time on varsity.

Senior Andrew Uhm and sophomore Damon Lovelace are also fighting for a spot on varsity.

“In a league with so many talented athletes and such knowledgeable, successful coaches, we always make it our goal to be in the top three and this year is no different,” Burbank coach Kathryn Nelson said. “We hope to advance our boys team into the CIF Finals and take a shot at making the State Meet this year.”

The Burbank girls’ team is coming off of a league championship season. The Bulldogs, who are ranked No. 9 in the CIF Division 1 preseason poll, were hit hard by graduation. However, they are still deep and should still be in contention for another league title.

Sol Fernandez is back for her senior year.  She ran 5:18.1 in the 1,600 last spring in track and 11:24.3 in the 3,200.

Sol Fernandez

Junior Mckynzee Kelley was the Pacific League frosh-soph champion in the 1,600, going 5:25.38.  Kelley (11:35.3 in 3,200). Elin Markarian (11:34.00 in the 3,200) was the frosh-soph league champion in cross country last year. Fellow juniors Megan LaCamera (12:19.49 as a freshman), Noela Kim (12:03.51), and Zoe Zeron (12:45.48) figure to play key roles on the varsity.
Senior Cynthia Movsisian (12:36.4 in 3,200), sophomore Kyalin Abarabar (13:12.92 in 3,200), senior Izzy Bittencourt (13:12.19 in 3,200) and freshman Joanna Camacho are also fighting for a varsity spot.

“We have a good group of juniors moving up to support Sol but staying healthy will be key,” Nelson said. “We have a very hard working class of freshman girls and we are excited to watch them grow in the program. Joanna Camacho has already broken into the top 10 coming out of summer and Clara Kim is not far behind.”

Burroughs

The Indians will be solid with the boys and girls teams.

Junior Jordan Guzman, who finished sixth in the Pacific League finals last year, will lead the way. Senior Ceci Whitney, who finished eighth in league, is also back. Sophomore Sophia Navarro, who was 10th in league finals, gives the Indians a solid top three.

Jordan Guzman of Burroughs

Sophomore Savannah Hernandez (12:14.6 in 3,200) will probably will the role of being fourth. Juniors Briana Contreras (12:46.45 in 3,200) and Kiara Cruz (27th in cross country league finals last year) should give the Indians enough to be serious league contenders.

Seniors Taylor Lombardo, Samanatha Hoxsie and junior Kaia Mouser are also in contention for spots on varsity.

“We need to work on closing the gap between our top seven runners,” Burroughs coach John Peebles said. “They are working hard and it is a long season, but we have to simply focus on getting better one day at a time.”

The Burroughs boys team is one that might surprise some people because they are quite good, even though everyone is looking at Crescenta Valley and Burbank. The Indians might actually be a year away from being the team to beat in league.

Junior Julian Largaespada was the Pacific League’s frosh-soph champion in the 1,600 (4:36.37).

Junior Jimmy Nealis (4:41.21 in 1,600) is also capability of big things.

Seniors Logan Berger (10:10.29 in the 3,200 in league finals), Trevor Villagran (10:18.30) and  Robert McGraham (10:46.46) are all solid veterans.

Sophomore Mason Ortega (4:50.62 in 1,600 in Buroughs-Burbank dual meet),  sophomore Jalen Leighton (4:54.49 in 1,600 in Burroughs-Burbank dual meet) and sophomore Chase Eldridge (hurdler, middle distance runner in track) will also battle for a spot on varsity.

“The boys are really working on the concept of pack running,” Peebles said.  “The path to success for the boys will be getting the pack to go together.”

Looking Back at 2017 in Sports

A year after arguably the most successful year local sports teams have ever had, 2017 turned out to be almost equally as strong. A number of athletes and teams achieved many things to be proud. This is a review of the top 10 teams of 2017 from Burbank and Burroughs highs.

  1. Burbank Boys Basketball

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

The Bulldogs may have not won a Pacific League title, but their postseason run was nothing short of amazing. Burbank finished with a 25-10 record and came as close to winning as a CIF title as one could have, losing only by one point on an off-balance 3-pointer at the buzzer against Brentwood. In its playoff run, the Bulldogs defeated teams few gave them a chance of winning. Burbank defeated  La Sierra of Riverside, followed by second seeded Crean Lutheran and then Rancho Mirage, whose shortest starter was as tall as Burbank’s tallest. The Bulldogs also rallied from a 13-point deficit against Rancho Mirage. Michael Woods was the leader of the group of seniors who had played together for several years, ultimately resulting in arguably the best season in school history.

  1. Burbank Football

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

A year after getting to the CIF championship game, Burbank was hit hard by losses to graduation. But the Bulldogs still had a small core that knew what it was like to win. This team, unlike the team a year ago, went on to win the Pacific League title under first-year coach Adam Colman. Burbank also knocked off top-seeded  South Hills during its playoff run before falling to Don Lugo in the CIF semifinals.  The Bulldogs have a lot of talent coming back for next season, so this team has lots to look forward to in 2018.

 

  1. Burroughs Boys Soccer

Photo courtesy Christina Quintero

The Indians put together a stellar season as longtime head coach Mike Kodama earned his 10th league title. Burroughs went 19-5-4 overall and 11-2-1 in league. The Indians won a pair of CIF Southern Section Division 3 playoff matches, including one on the road and in the rain against Paso Robles. Eventually Burroughs’ run was stopped by a fine Salesian side.

 

  1. Burroughs Boys Volleyball

The Indians continued their streak of eight consecutive Pacific League titles by finishing 16-13 overall and

10-0 in league. While the record may not look impressive, Burroughs was playing against the toughest competition out there, playing in Division 1 in the CIF playoffs. The Indians outlasted Newbury Park in the first round of the playoffs, before falling to national power Huntington Beach in the second round.

  1. Burbank Girls Tennis

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

The Bulldogs finished 11-5 overall and third in the tough and deep Pacific League and had to win a wild card match just to make it into the main draw. They did that and went on to win two more CIF Southern Section Division 2 playoff matches before falling to top seeded Northwood of Irvine in the quarterfinals.

  1. Burroughs Girls Volleyball

Led by University of Washington bound outside hitter Marin Grote, the Indians went 28-7 and captured the Pacific League title. Burroughs advanced to the second round of the CIF Southern Section Division 3 playoffs before losing to Westridge of Pasadena.

 

  1. Burroughs Boys Water Polo

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Indians went 15-9 and fought off Hoover to win the Pacific League title. A year after winning a CIF title, Burroughs moved up to Division 3, where it advanced to the second round of the playoffs before losing to Dos Pueblos of Goleta.

  1. Burroughs Softball

(Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Indians were not as sharp as they have been in the past. Still they were able to earn a share of the Pacific League title, going 19-9 overall and 12-2 in league. Playing in Division 1, the Indians were not so fortunate in the playoffs, losing to Oaks Christian in the first round.

  1. Burroughs Boys Cross Country

Alexander Hirsch of Burroughs

This very talented veteran group actually struggled for much of the season, but came on strong in Pacific League Finals to top a fine Arcadia squad for second place on the Apaches’ home course. Arcadia had defeated Burroughs in the first two league meets. Jagdeep Chahal also took home honors as the league’s individual champion.

  1. Burbank Girls Cross Country

Shalom Mejia of Burbank

The Bulldogs went neck and neck with Burroughs all season, with Burbank taking the first league meet by a large margin. Burroughs bounced back and beat Burbank narrowly twice. But the Bulldogs make the cut here due to its qualification for CIF Finals, where Burbank finished 20th in Division 1.  It was just the third time in program history that the lady Bulldogs qualified for CIF Finals.

 

2016 Was a Year to Remember in Sports for Burbank and Burroughs

If there is one thing most people in Burbank will agree on it is that 2016 was the best year on record for sports at Burroughs and Burbank highs.

Three teams appeared in CIF Southern Section championship games or matches and that isn’t counting Burroughs boys’ cross country team, which also put together a solid season.

Myburbank.com takes a look at the top 10 teams of the 2016 calendar year.

10. Burbank boys’ basketball

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

The young Bulldogs’ squad put together an impressive season going 20-11 overall, 8-6 in league. But it was postseason play that earned this team on this list. Led by junior Michael Woods, Burbank reached the quarterfinals of the Division 2-AA playoffs.  Burbank won on the road at Garden Grove and then defeated El Toro. Both opponents came in having won more than 20 games. In the quarterfinals, the Bulldogs hung tough for a long time before falling to Loyola of Los Angeles.

9. Burroughs baseball

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

The Indians (19-7) started the season as hot as any team, winning the prestigious Easton Tournament by defeating eventual CIF Southern Section Division 1 finalist Harvard-Westlake in the final. The Indians went on to earn a share of a second consecutive Pacific League crown, despite losing virtually its entire starting lineup to graduation from the previous year. It was the first time in school history that Burroughs won league titles in consecutive years. Burroughs’ season ended in the first round of the CIF playoffs with a loss to Rancho Cucamonga. Highlights included pitcher Kyle Nicol signing a letter of intent with Cal State Northridge. Teammate Shaine Leonard signed with the University of Antelope Valley.

8. Burroughs boys’ basketball

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

The Indians put together a 22-8 season and reached the semifinals of the CIF Southern Section Division 1-A playoffs for the first time since 1990, when Burroughs was knocked out by an Artesia team that featured future-NBA players Ed and Charles O’Bannon. In 2016, Burroughs lost to Santa Monica, the eventual CIF champion. Junior Tristen Hull earned All-CIF honors. Guard Steven Hubbell signed with California Lutheran University. Coach Adam Hochberg stepped down after the season to spend more time with his family.

7. Burbank boys’ track

The Bulldogs won a league title in boys’ track and field for the first time in 31 years. Burbank also did it without relying too much on its distance runners, which have traditionally been the strength of the program. Hurdler Martin Swan, jumper Noah Powell and sprinters Josh Cantong and Joey Miller were the leaders of the team. All four qualified for the CIF finals as a 1,600 meter relay team.

6. Burroughs boys’ cross country

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

This is a team that going into the season looked like a strong contender to win its second CIF title in three years and one that could have very easily been the top team in the city. The Indians shared the Pacific League title with Arcadia even though Burroughs won two of the three league meets and only lost on a sixth man tie-breaker in the league final. Burroughs ran very well in CIF preliminaries and looked like a serious contender to win in the finals. But this team fell well short and surprisingly missed qualifying for the state meet. This team should be motivated for next season after this season’s disappointing finish. Several key runners return next season led by Alexander Hirsch, Jagdeep Chahal and Jacob Calderon. A CIF title is within reach in 2017.

5. Burroughs girls’ basketball

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

The Indians dominated league by going 14-0, 24-8 overall and reaching the semifinals of the CIF Southern Section Division 1-A playoffs.  Ironically, Burroughs lost on the road in the semifinals at Mira Costa of Manhattan Beach. Mira Costa then lost in the final to Crescenta Valley, a team Burroughs defeated twice in winning the Pacific League. Jordan Meltzer led the Indians as she shared the Pacific League Player of the Year honor with Crescenta Valley’s Alissa Shin.

4. Burroughs softball

The Indians had an outstanding season led by sophomore pitcher Presley Miraglia, who was named the Pacific League Player of the Year and earned All-CIF honors for a second time. Burroughs went 24-5 on the season and lost 7-0 in the semifinals of the CIF Southern Section Division 3 playoffs to Grand Terrace, the eventual champion and one of the top rated teams in the nation. Coach Doug Nicol stepped down after the season so he could spend more time watching his kids play sports in college.

3. Burroughs boys’ water polo

A CIF champion in the third spot some might say? Yes, Burroughs had an outstanding season in winning the CIF Southern Section Division 5 title. However, one must remember the Indians did not win the Pacific League title. Their opposition in the playoffs was certainly not elite. There are also some questions marks around this team as several key players have not been students at Burroughs throughout their entire high school careers. In fact, several are transfers from Burbank High. But this team will almost certainly be higher up on the list next year as the main core of players return for their senior seasons, led by CIF MVP David Arakelyan, J.J. Ambartsumyan and Marko Vucetic.

2. Burbank football

The Bulldogs captured the hearts of many of the city. For the first time in 30 years a local football team played for a CIF Southern Section title.

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

After finishing second in the Pacific League, the Bulldogs were clearly a different team in the playoffs, dominating most of their opponents until the final when it was bothered by an unexpected call of Mother Nature. Still nobody will forget this group that grew up together led by Guy Gibbs, Nick Warren, Forest Fajardo and Jake Kelley. These kids should all be in the Burbank High Sports Hall of Fame one day.  Coach Richard Broussard stepped down at the end of the season.

1. Burroughs boys’ volleyball

Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

The Indians won their seventh consecutive Pacific League title and were clearly the most talented team in the city. Led by a veteran group that included setter Ryan Van Loo and outside hitters Andrew D’Almada and Cameron Capili, the Indians overcame a loss to Oak Park in the CIF Southern Section championship by defeating that same team a week later in CIF Southern California State Regional tournament.

 

In closing, it was very hard to make a top-10 list. There were a couple of teams that were very good that did not make the list but deserve honorable mention. Those were the Burbank and Burroughs girls’ soccer teams. The Burroughs boys’ soccer team also had a solid season as did the Burbank girls’ tennis team, the Burbank girls’ basketball team and Burroughs girls’ golf team and volleyball teams.

We want to wish the best of luck to all Burbank and Burroughs teams in 2017.