Tag Archives: Burroughs

Burroughs Softball Defeats Burbank, 7-2

By Rick Assad


In sports, emotion often plays a significant role and it did for five-plus innings of Monday’s Pacific League softball game at Olive Park.

Burroughs High came in having already clinched the league banner while rival Burbank was tucked solidly in fourth place.

All of this didn’t matter as the Indians held a slim one-run lead heading into the bottom of the sixth inning when they erupted for four runs and waltzed to a 7-2 win.

The two will face off once again on Wednesday at McCambridge Park with a 6 p.m. start time.

JBHS vs BHS Softball May 9 2016-Card 1

Burroughs shortstop Kaitlin Okimoto takes a throw during the Indians’ 7-2 win over Burbank. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“The girls feed off each other,” Burroughs coach Doug Nicol said. “These girls compete. But I told them that Burbank wasn’t going to lay down. In these kinds of games, the best team doesn’t always win.”

It was a back-and-forth affair between Burroughs’ ace Presley Miraglia and Burbank’s top hurler Allie Benson.

After a few times through the batting order, the Indians nicked Benson, who went five innings while allowing eight hits with three strikeouts and two walks, for three hits and two walks with an error in the sixth.

The frame began with Miraglia pushing a single to right field while Brianna Johnson was safe on an infield hit back to Benson.

JBHS vs BHS Softball May 9 2016-Card 1

The Indians’ Lauren Lopez is out at the plate as Desiree Gomez makes the tag. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Isabel Frias reached on an error which filled the bases and Amanda Flores walked to make it 4-2.

The big blow was Destiny Velasquez’s bases-clearing triple to right center that prompted Burbank Coach Mike Delaney to bring in Reace Rushing with none out.

Rushing then retired Brianna Devellano, Hannah Talavera and Lauren Lopez on infield grounders.

For two innings, neither team managed a hit or a run until Desiree Gomez singled with one out in the third inning for the Bulldogs.

Gomez was caught stealing on a terrific throw from Devellano, the catcher to Kaitlin Okimoto, the shortstop.

JBHS vs BHS Softball May 9 2016-Card 1

Burbank first baseman Emma Kerr makes the play. The Bulldogs fell to the Indians, 7-2. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“This is my fourth year playing in these games,” said Okimoto, who will be attending Brown University. “I try to think about it as just another game. I take a deep breath and try to relax.”

Miraglia, who toured seven innings, surrendered five hits with 12 strikeouts and no walks, then fanned Alex Davis for the third out.

In the bottom of the third, the Indians (20-4 and 13-0 in league) scored two runs on four hits as Benson allowed a double to right center by Velasquez, who led off the inning.

Devellano then struck out, but Talavera singled to center field. Lopez’s infield hit made it 1-0 as Velasquez crossed the plate, and after Okimoto popped up for the second out, Miraglia lined a single to right field that plated Talavera.

Burbank (11-15 and 8-5 in league) cut the deficit in half with a run in the fourth inning when Emily Monterrey’s double brought in Emma Kerr, who singled to right.

Julia Duarte, who will be attending the University of Pennsylvania, lashed a base hit up the middle, but Kerr and Duarte were both left stranded when Miraglia struck out Macie Jensen and induced Amber Ingram to line out back to the box.

The Indians increased their lead to 3-1 with a run in the fifth inning after Lopez’s two-out double to left field scored Talavera, who walked.

Refusing to quit, Burbank trimmed the lead to 3-2 in the sixth inning when Cailey Stevenson lined a hard-hit ball over the head of left fielder Frias for a home run.

“I’m really proud of them,” Delaney said of his team. “We battled. Allie pitched her heart out. Presley threw a good game, but we were getting into too many negative counts. We couldn’t lay off the high stuff, but you can’t strike out 12 times and expect to win.”

Burroughs Baseball Lose Thriller, 1-0, To Crescenta Valley

By Rick Assad


Even by high school baseball standards, Burroughs pitcher Kyle Nicol doesn’t throw very hard.

Yet the crafty side-arm tossing right-hander has found ways to get batters out and win games.

On Friday night at Stengel Field and facing always-tough Crescenta Valley, Nicol allowed seven singles in six and two-third innings including Ryan Lynch’s game-winning blooper into left center in the seventh that scored Chuck Weinmann, who walked, stole second base that gave the Falcons a 1-0 Pacific League victory.

“This was a tough game to lose,” said Nicol, who worked a perfect third, fourth and fifth inning. “I just wanted to keep throwing zeroes on the board. Everything was working tonight. They only had a few solid hits off me. But stuff happens.”

Nicol isn’t tall at 5-foot-8 and weighs 150 pounds, but is able to keep hitters off balance.

“I rely on movement and hitting my spots,” Nicol explained of his success that included a 1-0 victory over Harvard-Westlake in the title game of the prestigious Easton Tournament.

Three days earlier, the host Indians outlasted Crescenta Valley 13-8, but no such slugfest took place on this brisk evening.

The Falcons pulled into first place in the league with a 9-1 mark and are 17-6 overall.

“He did everything that he had to,” Burroughs coach Craig Sherwood said of Nicol, who will be playing baseball for Cal State Northridge. “I expected a low scoring game.”

The Indians, who are tied with Arcadia for second place in the league, managed four hits off winning pitcher Trevor Beer, who struck out four, walked two with a hit batter.

The game resembled a CIF Southern Section playoff encounter as every pitch was filled with tension and four combined errors were made with the Falcons committing three.

“You always want to play tough teams and Crescenta Valley is very good,” Sherwood said. “You wish every game was like this.”

Will Smiley and Scott Vinceri each had two hits for the Falcons, while Tanner Whitlock delivered a pair of singles for the Indians.

It’s not that the Indians (15-3 and 8-2 in league) didn’t have base runners, they did including the sixth inning when the bases were filled.

In the inning, six batters went to the plate as Randy Catlett led off with an infield hit. Gabriel Pellot came in as a pinch runner and moved all the way to third base, but couldn’t score.

Jason Whaley, who walked, also advanced to third base, but once again, couldn’t cross the plate.

In the seventh inning, Whitlock walked with one out and went to second base on an error, but Mitch Lefevre flied to left fielder Chuck Weinmann and designated hitter Riley Hooper bounced to Lynch, the shortstop.

In the first inning, Omar Tejeda singled to right center with two out and moved to second base on an error, but was left stranded when Jonathan Max fanned.

With one out in the second inning, Whitlock’s base hit to left was followed by Lefevre striking out and Hooper lifting a fly ball to Jamie Blank in right field.

Tejeda was nicked with a pitch in the fourth inning, but Max bounced into a force out. Max went second base on a wild pitch and became the second out which was followed by Nathan Palafox grounding out.

In the fifth, Whitlock singled to right center to open the frame, stole second base and moved to third on Hooper’s grounder. Whitlock was the third out after trying to score on a passed ball.

The Falcons also had scoring opportunities in the first inning when Blank, Vinceri and Smiley all singled, but Nicol got designated hitter Anthony Russo to ground out to first baseman Palafox.

Crescenta Valley also had a runner at third base in Ryan Malloy, who singled in the second inning, but failed to score when Nicol, who struck out four with one walk, induced Lynch and Nico Arrendondo to ground out.

The Falcons saw Vinceri single with one out in the sixth. William Rees became the pinch runner and advanced to second base on Smiley’s hit, but Max Meyer lined into a double play that ended the threat.

Burroughs Softball Drills Crescenta Valley, 4-1

By Rick Assad

Maybe first inning jitters were at work as Burroughs High star pitcher Presley Miraglia gave up a run in the top of the first to Crescenta Valley, but that was the only tally as the Indians remained unbeaten in Pacific League play after walking away with a 4-1 victory on Tuesday afternoon at Olive Park.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

The Indians accounted for six hits and remain undefeated in Pacific League play. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

The teams will meet at Crescenta Valley for a rematch on Thursday with a 3:30 p.m. start.

“We knew that it was going to be that kind of game,” Burroughs coach Doug Nicol said. “We’re going to have another tough game on Thursday.”

Miraglia began the first frame by striking out Jessica Yzaguirre and Kendall Ebert, but then allowed a single to left field by Syndee Wells.

Wells stole second base and advanced to third base on a base hit to left field by Alyssa Hernandez.

Wells scored on an error as the Falcons (12-7 and 8-1 in league) moved ahead 1-0. Miraglia ended the inning by striking out Paige Baker.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Presley Miraglia allowed four hits with 10 strikeouts and no walks as the Indians defeated Crescenta Valley, 4-1. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

“I was kind of nervous to begin the game knowing what it meant,” said Miraglia, who gave up four hits with 10 strikeouts and no walks across seven innings. “After we scored [in the bottom half], I just tried to relax and focus on pitching and hitting my spots.”

Miraglia worked a perfect second inning and fanned Peyton Hause and Marissa Gutierrez.

A 1-2-3 fourth inning followed as Miraglia struck out Alyssa Hernandez and Hause, and worked another perfect frame, the fifth, as she whiffed Gutierrez.

Miraglia then fanned Hause and Taylor Hoogenhuizen, the losing pitcher who surrendered six hits with two walks in six innings, in the seventh inning.

The Indians (16-4 and 9-0 in league) evened it at 1-1 in the bottom of the first inning when Kaitlin Okimoto singled to left center with two out.

Okimoto moved to second base on an infield hit by Miraglia and crossed the plate when Brianna Johnson rifled a single to left center.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs Coach Doug Nicol is a stickler for fundamentals. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Johnson, who plays third base and has a rifle arm, was instrumental in fielding several bunts that were turned into outs.

“We practice that every day and it becomes routine,” said Johnson, who committed an uncharacteristic throwing error in the third inning. “I’m pretty quick and I try to make the throw quick.”

Three innings later, the Indians struck for two runs to make it 3-1 and were helped out by an error on the center fielder.

Johnson began the frame by walking and then took second base on a hit to right center by Isabel Frias.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Defense was a key to the Indians’ win versus the Falcons. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

With two down, Brianna Devellano then lofted a ball to shallow center field that clanked off the fielder’s glove as both runners scored.

Hannah Talavera also singled to center field in the inning, but was left stranded when Devellano was out at the plate.

The Indians added an insurance run in the fifth inning when Okimoto lined a tremendous shot to left center that sailed over Yzaguirre’s head for a home run to make it 4-1.

“I expected this meeting to be a tough, competitive game,” Okimoto said. “I think that we have real good chemistry and that helps.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs’ offense made the most of its scoring opportunities. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs Softball Cruises To 11-1 Blitz Over Arcadia

By Rick Assad


It began innocently enough as Hannah Talavera lined to center field and Lauren Lopez lined to shortstop.

What followed was a parade of a dozen players coming to bat with nine reaching base via a base hit as the Burroughs High softball team scored 10 runs en route to a mercy-ruled 11-1 Pacific League win over visiting Arcadia on Thursday at Olive Park.

The next batter was Kaitlin Okimoto, who launched a solo shot over the right fielder’s head for a home run as the Indians (15-4 and 8-0 in league) pulled ahead 1-0.

Presley Miraglia then walked while Brianna Johnson singled to center field. Isabel Frias drove in a run after reaching base on an infield hit.

Amanda Flores singled to right field for a run batted in and Destiny Velasquez (two hits) slapped a base hit up the middle for a run.

Alise Archuleta had a run-scoring infield hit while Talavera walked, which was followed by Lopez’s two-run single to right field.

Okimoto drilled a line-drive to left center for a home run that brought in three runs while Miraglia singled to center field.

“I like to play a close, competitive game,” Okimoto said. “If it’s too one-sided, sometimes you can lose your focus. You don’t want to do that. It’s always nice when you have a lead that’s more than a few runs, though.”

The inning finally concluded with Johnson popping up to the second baseman.

“With a big lead you can lose your edge,” Burroughs coach Doug Nicol said. “We want to be challenged. We’re going to be challenged next week when we play Crescenta Valley.”

Because of the 10-0 lead, Miraglia went two innings as the right-hander worked a perfect first and second inning.

Miraglia struck out two and didn’t allow a walk and was replaced by Mia Storer, who went three frames and was credited with the victory.

Storer surrendered two hits and one run with five strikeouts and three walks.

Storer retired the side 1-2-3 in the third inning and fanned two batters, and struck out two more in the fourth inning while allowing a pair of walks and a base hit by Susan Harrison.

“When you have a lead it allows you to bring in players and give them meaningful playing time,” Nicol said. “You don’t want to throw them in there during the playoffs and them not having playing time. That’s what these games are good for.”

The Apaches (3-10 and 2-7 in league) scored their only run in the fifth inning when Storer walked Nicole Puente to lead off the frame.

Puente went to second base on a wild pitch and moved to third base on a single by Christie Haung. Puente crossed the plate on Storer’s wild pitch.

Burroughs added a solo run in the fourth inning when Archuleta singled to center field with one out, stole second base and scored on Lopez’s triple to right field.

Nikki Ricciardella had a lead off base hit to center field in the third inning and advanced to second base on Storer’s infield single, but didn’t score.

Burroughs Lose Heartbreaker 8-4 In Eight Innings

By Rick Assad


Burroughs High and Crescenta Valley were each undefeated in Pacific League play while Arcadia had one loss heading into Tuesday’s league showdown with the Apaches at Tomahawk Field.

After an 8-4, eight-inning setback to Arcadia and the Falcons’ 8-0 triumph over host Muir, Crescenta Valley is now 8-0 while the Indians and Apaches are both 6-1.

“We had opportunities, but I give credit to their pitcher,” Burroughs coach Craig Sherwood said. “He did a good job of throwing. I like those side-arm pitchers.”

Trailing 4-2, the Indians scored two runs in the seventh inning and sent six batters to the plate.

The frame began with Riley Hooper getting hit with a pitch by Brett Porter and Randy Catlett getting a single to left field that moved Hooper to second base.

Justin Palafox then laid down a sacrifice bunt and Jason Whaley had an run-scoring ground out that scored Hooper. Gabriel Pellot, who came in as a pinch runner for Catlett, crossed the plate on an error.

“That was a challenge,” Sherwood said of the early 4-0 deficit. “I think this is a great team [Burroughs] with outstanding talent. But this puts Crescenta Valley in the cat-bird seat and we’re going to have to play well the rest of the way in order to make the [CIF] playoffs.”

The Apaches, who lost to host Glendale 2-0, iced the affair with a four-run eighth inning when 10 batters waltzed to the plate.

Ryan Tuck, who had four hits that included a double, drove in a run with an infield hit, while Jacob Lopez (two hits) was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.

Loren Iwasaki (two hits) forced in a run with a bases-loaded walk and Mike Saenz was nicked with a pitch with the bases filled.

“We’ve had trouble scoring runs,” Arcadia coach Nick Lemas said. “This was a huge win for us. We put pressure on them offensively by putting the ball in play.”

The Indians (13-3) fell behind 1-0 in the top of the first inning when Iwasaki’s base hit off Jesse Galindo drove in Tuck (three runs batted in), who was hit by a pitch.

It became 3-0 through two frames after Noah Falcon (two hits) hit a sacrifice fly that made it 2-0 and Lopez’s single gave the Apaches (12-6-1) a 3-0 advantage. Lopez drove in three runs.

It ballooned to 4-0 with a run in the fourth inning when Tuck’s double drove in Falcon, who led off the inning with a double down the left-field line.

Galindo went three and two-third innings while allowing seven hits with two hit batters.

Burroughs trimmed the lead in half after a two-run fifth inning when Hooper (two hits) led off with a single to left field and scored on Whaley’s single to left. Justin Palafox (two hits) reached base on a hit to left field and scored on an error.

Shaine Leonard picked up for Galindo and took the loss after toiling three and two-third frames, surrendering four hits, two walks, with one strikeout and one hit batter.

Whaley went one-third of an inning with one walk, one hit allowed and one hit batter, while Catlett tossed one-third of an inning with one hit batter.

Porter toured six innings with eight hits allowed, one walk, three strikeouts and one hit batter, while Falcon collected the win and went two innings with one hit batter, one strikeout and two hits surrendered.

Burroughs Baseball Takes Out Glendale, 11-1

By Rick Assad 


Burroughs High senior pitcher Kyle Nicol didn’t have his best stuff, but was good enough to beat host Glendale 11-1 in a Pacific League baseball game on Friday.

Nicol went four innings and allowed two hits with one run, added three strikeouts with one walk and two hit batters.

“I just wasn’t feeling it today,” Nicol said. “Mentally I was fine, but for some reason I wasn’t feeling it. But my teammates always have my back.”

Luckily, Nicol (4-0) was supported by a nine hit barrage as junior Justin Palafox had two hits with four runs batted in while sophomore Nathan Palafox added two hits and two RBIs.

“We’re not a great hitting team, but we’re a good situational hitting team,” Burroughs coach Craig Sherwood said. “Every team in this league is good. I have tremendous respect for Glendale’s coach [Alan Eberhart].”

The scoring began in the first inning when Justin Palafox, who scored three runs, was safe on an error and crossed the plate when Nathan Palafox singled to right center.

Burroughs (9-2 and 2-0 in league) then sent 11 batters to the plate in the second inning as Justin Palafox drove in a run after getting hit by the pitch and senior Omar Tejeda walked with the bases loaded to make it 3-0.

Nathan Palafox’s two-run single to right field made it 5-0 and it became 6-0 on an infield hit by senior Tanner Whitlock.

The Indians added a solo run in the third inning when Justin Palafox singled in junior Riley Hooper, who doubled to lead off the frame.

Burroughs made it 11-0 when it trotted 10 batters to the plate in the fourth inning. Senior Randy Catlett had a sacrifice fly, Justin Palafox chimed in with a two-run double to right center and senior Nick Ziegler added an infield single that brought in a run.

The Nitros (1-11 and 0-2 in league) trimmed the deficit to 10 runs with a tally in the fourth inning when junior Andrew Tinoco doubled to left center to open the frame and scored on an error.

The Indians made two errors in the fourth inning and Sherwood hopes to correct the matter.

“The first thing that the players learn when they put on the Burroughs jersey is to catch the ball. You have to be able to pitch and catch.”

Senior Jared Whaley worked the fifth and final inning and after allowing a leadoff single to senior Keyvan Duran, was able to retire the next three batters that included striking out senior Bryan Mata for the second out.


Burroughs Softball Begins Pacific League On Right Foot

By Rick Assad

Rain, thunder, lightning and hail stones suspended Tuesday’s Pacific League softball game between Burroughs High and Glendale at Jenny Dalton Field.

When the sky opened up, the game was halted with one out in the top of the third inning and a runner on first base and no score.

A day later, the Indians’ bats came alive and sophomore pitcher Presley Miraglia was on the mark and the chief beneficiary of a 5-1 victory.

Highly-decorated after an outstanding freshman campaign, Miraglia, who retired the side in order in the first, third and fourth inning, went seven strong innings, struck out 10 while allowing one walk and six hits.

It seemed the at-bats Wednesday were filled with confidence and it showed when junior Lauren Lopez, who was the batter when the rains came, tripled to right center field, which drove in sophomore Hannah Talavera, who reached on a force out.

“Lauren made a statement in that first at-bat,” Burroughs coach Doug Nicol said. “After the rains came, we had a chance to talk to the girls in the hallway and we spoke about being more aggressive at the plate. That really helped.”

The Indians (8-2 and 1-0 in league), who pounded out nine hits, made it 3-0 with a two-run fourth inning as five batters marched to the plate.

“On Tuesday, they weren’t very aggressive at the plate and hitting is all about approach,” Nicol said.

Junior Brianna Johnson opened the frame with a walk off freshman Aurora Funaro, and moved to second base on sophomore Jessie Amaya’s sacrifice bunt.

“The energy was completely different today,” Amaya said. “We said, let’s grind it out. Let’s get this together.”

Funaro toiled seven frames, fanned three, walked two and filled in admirably for senior and ace hurler Jordan Lousararian, who was under the weather.

Johnson stole third base and scored on junior Amanda Flores’ ground out.

“We had a lot more energy today,” said Flores, who walked in the second inning. “We needed to get hits and so we played small ball.”

Johnson knows that because the Indians are the co-league champions along with Burbank, teams are gunning for them.

“I don’t feel the pressure,” said Johnson, who had two hits with a walk, a run batted in and two runs scored. “I think it puts the pressure on the other team.”

Johnson was asked about the difference in the approach at the plate from Tuesday to Wednesday.

“I think that we were looking for our pitch today,” she said. “We were more aggressive and more dialed in.”

With two out, senior Brianna Devellano then drilled an inside the park homer to right center that made it 3-0.

“We were more relaxed today than we were yesterday,” said Devellano, who is the catcher. “We were over-thinking on Tuesday.”

Burroughs trotted seven batters to the plate in the sixth inning and tacked on a solo run to make it 4-0 when Johnson tripled to center field and scored on a throwing error.

The lead became 5-0 in the seventh inning and was scored when senior Kaitlin Okimoto doubled to left field, moved to third base on a fly ball and scored on Johnson’s sacrifice bunt.

The Nitros (6-3 and 0-1 league) cut the lead to 5-1 with a run in the bottom half of the frame when senior Claire Smith doubled in senior Grace Sinisterra, who singled to right center.

Glendale junior Sammy Fabian’s one-out single in the sixth inning increased her hitting streak to 52 games.

The Indians will host the Nitros on Thursday with a 3:15 p.m. start.

Burbank And Burroughs Each Seek Pacific League Title

By Rick Assad


The Burroughs High and Burbank softball teams are each hoping to claim the Pacific League crown and then make a dent in the CIF Southern Section playoffs.

But right now the one difference is that the Indians are 7-2 in preseason while the Bulldogs are 1-9.

Burroughs begins its league trek at Glendale on Tuesday, while Burbank will host Arcadia. Both games commence at 3:30 p.m.

In the rivalry games, the Indians will host the Bulldogs on May 9 and Burroughs will visit Burbank on May 11.

If the Indians are to fare well this season much will rest on the shoulders of sophomore pitcher Presley Miraglia, who went 21-4 and made All-State, All-CIF and All-League.

“Besides throwing about 90 percent of the innings, Presley is a great hitter,” Burroughs coach Doug Nicol said.

Assisting Miraglia in the pitcher’s circle will be freshman Mia Storer, who according to Nicol has a bright future.

Doug Nicol

Burroughs softball Coach Doug Nicol has high expectations. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“Mia is really good and she throws really hard,” Nicol said. “She’s a strikeout pitcher with a lot of speed.”

After a first-round bye last season, the Indians, who tied Burbank for first place in the league with a 13-1 record, lost in the second round to Laguna Hills, 4-3.

“There’s a lot of competition and the girls are working hard,” Nicol said. “I think that we’re definitely one of the top two teams the league.”

Nicol added: “We’ve either won or shared the league title in four of the six years I’ve been here. We think if we win league, that we can do well in the playoffs.”

Junior Amanda Flores and junior Destiny Velasquez will each see time at first base and each will share time as the designated hitter.

Junior Lauren Lopez will spend time at second base and senior Kaitlin Okimoto will play shortstop.

Junior Brianna Johnson will toil at third base and senior Brianna Devellano is the catcher.

Senior Alise Archuleta will play left field, sophomore Hannah Talavera will patrol center field and sophomore Jessie Amaya will play right field. Senior Isabel Frias will also see time in center field.

“We really focus on the team,” Nicol said. “We focus on building a team. We don’t rely on one girl to carry us. Last year we were more of a slugging team and we scored a lot of runs. This year we’re going to play small ball. Hit behind the runner, move runners over. The little things.”

The rest of the team includes senior Sophia Odio, who will play in the outfield, as will junior Tatiana Caceres and sophomore Nikki Ricciardella will play shortstop and catcher.

The Bulldogs are nine games under .500, but are looking to turn matters around during league play.

Some of the falloff is due to the graduation of Caitlyn Brooks, who went 21-5 and helped the Bulldogs advance to the second round of the playoffs where they lost to Bishop Amat, 4-3.

Burbank senior class won three straight league titles (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank Coach Mike Delaney is surrounded by some of the team from 2015 that shared the Pacific League title with Burroughs. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Brooks, who had an 0.66 earned-run average with 264 strikeouts in 149 and one-third innings, is currently at the University of Notre Dame where she’s on the women’s softball team.

Burbank Coach Mike Delaney is relying on four pitchers to take Brooks’ place. They are sophomore Reace Rushing, sophomore Allie Benson, freshman Alyssa Porras and freshman Alex Davis.

Delaney is also fortunate in that he has many players who can fit into numerous positions on the field.

Senior Julia Duarte can play first base, shortstop and third base, senior Cailey Stevenson will play second base, shortstop and center field, sophomore Macie Jensen will play first base, second base and the outfield, freshman Emily Monterrey can play second base, shortstop and third base and freshman Desiree Gomez will play shortstop, third base and catcher.

Senior Amber Ingram, sophomore Anysia Gonzalez and freshman Sarah Garelick all play in the outfield.

The rest includes junior Emma Kerr (first base and catcher), freshman Amaya Broyls (second base and catcher), sophomore Bene Snyder (third base and utility) and sophomore Erin Lashkari (first base and utility).

Burroughs, Burbank Baseball Eye Pacific League Banner

By Rick Assad


When it comes to the preseason baseball schedule, Burroughs High Coach Craig Sherwood and Burbank skipper Bob Hart always prefer to play a tough schedule.

They say it better prepares their respective teams for the Pacific League grind which begins on March 29 when the Indians host Glendale and the Bulldogs face Arcadia on the road. Both games begin at 3:30 p.m.

Burroughs is the defending league champion and are 7-2 after a 7-0 start, while the Bulldogs have one victory in seven games.

Burbank had losses to Camarillo 5-2, Dos Pueblos 4-0, Newbury Park 4-0, Thousand Oaks 8-2, West Ranch 6-1 and Birmingham 3-2, before drilling the Brentwood School 14-5.

Part of the Indians’ winning streak included taking the prestigious Easton Tournament over Harvard-Westlake.

Burroughs began the season with a 3-2 triumph over Palmdale, then defeated West Ranch 8-0, Chatsworth 8-7, Moorpark 3-2, and Harvard-Westlake 1-0, before playing in the San Diego Lion’s tourney where they knocked off Roosevelt 2-0, and Mission Bay 8-3, before losing to Sweetwater 3-2 and McClatchy 2-0.

The Indians will host the Bulldogs on May 10, while Burroughs will visit Burbank on May 13.

A tried-and-true baseball philosophy is that pitching and defense go hand-in-hand, while hitting is fleeting.

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Pitcher Kyle Nicol and catcher Tanner Whitlock celebrate a win in the Easton Tournament title game. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

“You need to be able to catch the ball and play defense,” said Sherwood, whose team fell to Moorpark in the CIF Southern Section playoffs in 2015. “Our goal every year is the same and that’s to win league.”

Kyle Nicol and Jesse Galindo are the Indians’ top hurlers, and both are off to solid starts.

The Indians will have Nathan Palafox at first base, Brandon Martinez at second base, Justin Palafox at shortstop, Omar Tejeda at third base and Tanner Whitlock at catcher.

In the outfield, Mitch Lefevre will toil in left field, Jason Whaley in center field and Randy Catlett in right field. Riley Hooper will be used as the main designated hitter.

The rest of the squad includes Matthew Rudas, Noah Laborico, Joey Kuhn, Jared Whaley, Erik Gonzalez, Henrik Buchanan, Jonathan Max, Shaine Leonard, Nick Ziegler and Gabriel Pellot.

Hart also feels his team is ready to make a run at the league banner after making the playoffs five of nine years.

Burbank High Head Coach Bob Hart

Burbank Coach Bob Hart feels confident the Bulldogs will play well in league. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“Our primary goal every year is to win the league title,” he said. “I’m optimistic. We’ve played a tough nonleague schedule and that’s going to prepare us well for league.”

Burbank, which was under .500 overall a season ago and made the postseason, will use four pitchers and they include Garret Dolan, Henry Leake, Colby Vosgien and Matt Lungaro.

The Bulldogs’ infield consists of Danny Porras at first base, Kyle Tanner and Johnathan Casteneda at second base, Adrian Johnson at shortstop, Leake and Fisher Cabot at third base and Matt Shaugabay behind the plate.

Chris Minnick and Branden Philips will be in left field, Forest Fajardo and Andy Reyes in center field and Jeremy Chong in right field, while Everett Fair will be the primary designated hitter.

“I like to be flexible when it comes to the lineup and I think I have a lot of flexibility,” Hart said. “I have a lot of really good players that I can put out there and feel as though they’re going to play well.”

The other players include Abiezer Delgado, Ben Crosby, Christian Guerra, Ethan Yang, Frank Yokas, Jake Kelley, Jake Zedlar, Nick Alfonso, Owen Ruiz, Raul Sarabia, Tim Hibbard and Javier Reyes.

Burroughs Edges Harvard-Westlake, 1-0, Wins Easton Baseball Tournament

By Rick Assad


As expected, runs and hits were scarce when Burroughs High and Harvard-Westlake faced off in the championship game of the 12th Annual Easton Tournament held at Birmingham High on Wednesday night.

It was indeed as the Indians edged the Wolverines, 1-0, with the only run tallied coming with two out and the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh inning when Jason Whaley’s base hit brought in pinch-runner Gabriel Pellot, who came in for Omar Tejeda, who opened the frame with a double.

“I expected Harvard-Westlake [4-1] to play a tremendous game in the Easton Tournament, which is the best tournament in Southern California,” Burroughs coach Craig Sherwood said. “They have a great program. Nobody expected us to be here. We were playing with house money.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs pitcher Kyle Nicol fanned 14 and allowed two hits in a 1-0 win over Harvard-Westlake in the Easton Tournament title game. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Front and center was pitcher Kyle Nicol, who allowed only two hits over seven innings. Nicol struck out 14 and delivered first-pitch strikes to 19 hitters.

“I don’t think you’re going to see a better performance than the one turned in by Kyle,” Sherwood said. “That was something special.”

Only 5-8 and with a submarine delivery, Nicol had the highly-ranked Wolverines eating out of his hand.

“Just because he doesn’t throw in the 90s doesn’t mean he can’t be effective and get hitters out,” Sherwood said. “Any college coach that isn’t calling him in the next 48 hours is making a big mistake.”

Sherwood went on: “He can pitch. He has great command and he kept them [Harvard-Westlake] off balance.”

(Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs catcher Tanner Whitlock and hurler Nicol were in sync all evening versus the highly-ranked Wolverines. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

The Indians have yet to lose this season and are the defending Pacific League champion.

So far Burroughs has knocked off Palmdale 3-2, West Ranch 8-0, Chatsworth 8-7 and Moorpark 3-2.

“Our goal is to repeat as league champs,” Sherwood said. “The kids believe. Only good things can happen when you believe. We’ve said, why not us?”

Sherwood added: “My philosophy is play catch. Throw strikes and play good defense. But this is nothing I’ve done. It’s what the kids have done. This about the players.”

Burroughs (5-0), which was coming off a dramatic seventh inning one-run victory over the Musketeers on Saturday, also received hits from Tanner Whitlock and Justin Palafox, who had the game-winner versus Moorpark in the Easton tourney semifinal.

“Tanner [the catcher] called a great game,” Sherwood said. “He was locked in. I just let the kids play.”

Harvard-Westlake came in with wins over Poly 10-0, Newbury Park 7-0, Simi Valley 8-4 and El Camino Real 3-1 in the Easton Tournament semifinals.