Tag Archives: Erika Montoya

Burroughs, Burbank Girls Basketball Ready, Steady

By Rick Assad

At least recently, the Burroughs High girls’ basketball team has been the dominant force in the Pacific League, having won numerous banners under the leadership of longtime coach Vicky Oganyan.

Meanwhile, city rival Burbank has also produced some fine teams and has usually ended up in the top half of the league.

Both should be contenders for the league title this season, but Pasadena, which finished in a three-way tie for first place along with Burroughs and Crescenta Valley, might very well be the front-runner.

Bri Castro is a senior shooting guard and the only returning starter for the Bulldogs. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Indians, who were 21-8 overall and 10-4 in league a season ago, are still plenty potent.

“My expectations are to stay focused on the task ahead, play hard one play at a time, work together and get better individually and as a team as the season progresses,” said Ognayan, who saw the Indians lose to Walnut 43-38 in a CIF Southern Section Division II AA opening-round playoff match.

Oganyan, who played at Glendale High, has more than enough weapons at her disposal.

“Faith Boulanger, Dyani Del Castillo and Kayla Wrobel are all returning all-league players who we are going to count on to lead the way,” she said. “All three have experience and know what it takes to be successful at the varsity level.”

Boulanger is a 6-foot-1 junior center/forward, who can score from anywhere on the court and also collect rebounds.

Boulanger averaged 15 points and nearly eight boards for the Indians, who will visit Burbank on January 10 and host the Bulldogs on February 6.

Del Castillo (5-8) is a junior point guard with slick ball-handling skills, while Wrobel (5-11) is a junior power forward, who can score and grab rebounds.

Faith Boulanger is a junior center/power forward who can score, rebound and play defense for the Indians. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

There are three seniors on the team and include A’sia Morales (5-7), a point guard, Sophie Hawkins (5-7), a shooting guard and Hana Savola (5-11), a power forward.

The juniors on the squad are Lauren Lucas (5-5), a point guard and Sydney Martin (6-0), a center.

The available sophomores are Stephanie Wilson (5-4), a point guard, Noor Fahs (5-9), a small forward and Sarai Waddell (5-6), a shooting guard.

Three freshmen on also on the team and they are Isabella Roderick (5-11), a center, Ivana Razov (5-6), a shooting guard and Rachel Little (5-5), a point guard.

Jett Del Mundo is in his first season as coach of the Bulldogs, but has a quarter century of leading girls’ hoop programs, including Pasadena.

Kim Pimentel is a junior and the starting point guard for Burbank. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“My overall expectations for this group is to play better basketball, better team basketball than we did a season ago,” he said. “We won games because of our talent, but now we need to win games because we compete.”

Del Mundo then added: “We put a lot of hard work in the summer,” he noted. “They in turn wanted to participate in fall ball at Pasadena City College. I think we’re ready to start a new season and do better than a season ago.”

Del Mundo, a graduate of USC, feels confident that his team will have a productive season despite the graduation of highly-decorated power forward Osanna Tirityan, who did virtually everything on the floor.

Tirityan, an All-CIF selection, led the Bulldogs in multiple categories including points and rebounds.

Burbank finished last season with a 15-13 mark and 6-8 in league for fifth place, and didn’t get an at-large bid for the postseason tournament.

Also gone to graduation is starter Sofia Aslanyan. Track star Jayla Flowers decided to dedicated herself to her best sport.

Thirteen players comprise Burbank’s squad and includes five seniors, so there is enough leadership.

Two upper classmen are starters and includes Bri Castro, a gifted shooting guard and long-range shooter who is the only returning starter.

Kayla Wrobel is a junior power forward for Burroughs and a starter. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The other is center Adelina Bandarian, who will be asked to rebound and play defense, but can also put the ball in the hole.

“I’m approaching it like we can win hopefully every game,” Castro said. “But we have to play as a team and pass the ball. Last year I was mainly just a spot-up shooter. I want to be an all-around player. I want to drive to the basket more.”

What are some of Castro’s goals? “I kind of want to be all-league and I want to score more than 12 points a game,” she said.

Junior Kim Pimentel is also a starter and the point guard and captain and will have the ball in her hands a great deal.

“My expectations have been a little different this season. We’re starting over. We have only one returning starting player and that’s Bri. My expectations are pretty high,” Pimentel explained. “I have trust in my team and I think we can do really good. I just want to be the leader I can be. I just want to be there for my team. I want to be more aggressive on the court.”

Del Mundo will employ a three-guard offense, so the other backcourt starter will be sophomore Christina Ohanians.

Senior Khyla Lipscomb is the starting small forward, and ready to step in and contribute and so is freshman power forward Karen Casillas.

Senior small forward Valerie Martinez will likely see time on the floor and so will senior power forward Adriana Cabrera and junior guard Erika Montoya.

The rest of the team is comprised of junior forward Bella Jade, sophomore center Tabitha Cruz, sophomore small forward Emily Megerdichian and sophomore guard Alle Tarvirdi.

Burroughs Softball Takes Out Host Burbank 7-1

By Rick Assad

 

There were two vastly different emotions on display after Thursday night’s Pacific League softball game at McCambridge Park.

After the final out was recorded on a grounder to third base, the Burroughs High team and its faithful were elated after a 7-1 win over city rival Burbank.

Of course, there was dejection in the Bulldogs’ dugout, but at least one game remains when the CIF Southern Section playoffs begin with sites and matchups to be determined in the next few days.

Isabella Kam allowed five hits across seven innings for Burroughs, which won 7-1 over Burbank. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Indians (12-10 and 10-4 in league) also have an important postseason game next week.

The contest was nip-and-tuck after three innings as the Indians led 2-1, but a run in the sixth inning and four runs in the seventh would put the game out of reach.

Junior pitcher Isabella Kam was in the circle and hurled with cool confidence, allowing no hits in the second, fourth, fifth and seventh inning.

“Yes, honestly I was in the beginning because it was my first actual Burbank-Burroughs game where I’m pitching,” said Kam, who went seven innings with five hits yielded, five strikeouts and two walks of her early nerves. “It was kind of nerve-wracking for me, but I had a few girls calm me down and that was the most important thing, calming down.”

The Indians forged ahead 3-1 with a tally in the sixth inning as junior Sabrina Englebrecht’s single to center field off senior Alyssa Porras scored junior Chloe Bookmyer, who drew three walks and led off with a base on balls.

Alyssa Porras gave it everything she had in her last game against Burroughs. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Porras has been a workhorse and was on Thursday, touring seven frames, giving up eight hits, walking three and striking out two.

“Last year Allie [Benson] motivated me so much because I always wanted to be the pitcher. I always wanted to start every single game. This season, everyone was hurt. Savannah [Benson] was hurt, Alex [Davis] pitched, played center and short,” Porras said. “I have to act like I wasn’t tired even if I was just so I could finish the game.”

The next inning was the backbreaker as Burroughs trotted eight hitters to the plate that included a two-run single to right center from senior Sierra Harvey (two hits) and a two-run base hit to left field by senior Megan Williams (three singles).

In the third, the Indians marched ahead 2-0 on a two-run homer by Kam as junior Memorie Munoz came around to score after reaching on an error.

“I’m just so happy that I did really well,” said senior Mia Storer, the center fielder who had tears in her eyes. “I’m so happy. I’m a four-year player and this means so much for me and to play really good in the last Burbank-Burroughs game. This will stay with me forever.”

Storer had two sensational catches including a running grab off the bat of senior Amaya Broyls in the fifth inning for the first out and a diving stab off the bat of senior Sarah Garelick in the sixth for the first out and sophomore Erika Montoya on base after an infield single.

The Bulldogs (11-12-1 and 8-6 in league) shaved the lead to 2-1 as Montoya’s hit brought home senior Desi Gomez, who singled.

“It’s always tough to lose your final league game on your home field,” Burbank coach Mike Delaney said. “At some point we didn’t do what we were supposed do to.”

Davis singled in the first inning and left with an injured shoulder and Broyls also singled in the first inning.

Burroughs Softball Rallies Past City Rival Burbank 5-4

By Rick Assad

 

There were twists and turns and an eventual resolution in the seventh inning when the Burroughs High softball team faced its arch and city rival Burbank at Olive Park.

A two-run explosion that featured three hits helped propel the Indians to a 5-4 come-from-behind triumph over the Bulldogs in a Pacific League encounter before a near capacity crowd on Friday night.

Dyani Del Castillo was credited with the 5-4 win over Burbank. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“It was exciting,” Burroughs coach Wes Tanigawa said of the one-run thriller. “That’s how you want games, right? You don’t want games boring?”

Tanigawa became serious and added: “I actually think the turning point is when I brought one of my sub players in and she got a great hit,” he said of junior Sabrina Englebrecht, who singled twice. “I think that really motivated the team. It was getting toward the end of the game. The girls were kind of coming down a little bit, but Sabrina coming off the bench with that hit pumped them all up and got everybody into the game.”

Sophomore Dyani Del Castillo began the frame with a bloop single to right field off senior Alyssa Porras and sophomore Alyssa Valenzuela’s hit to left saw Del Castillo advance to second base.

Porras struck out senior Citlali Mendez swinging, but nicked senior Megan Williams, which loaded the bases.

Englebrecht lashed a sharp base hit to center that brought home Del Castillo with the tying run and when senior Hannah Skinner lofted a sacrifice fly to left field, Valenzuela, who contributed three singles, crossed the plate with the winning run.

Alyssa Porras struggled at times and was the hard-luck loser. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“I felt calm. l knew I was there already. Runners on really didn’t faze me,” said Skinner of her clutch at-bat in the seventh. “I already had a few hits before, so I knew what I was doing. I knew what she was throwing. When she was throwing all that junk, I knew she was tired at that point. I just stayed on it,” she noted.

Skinner, who singled twice, said that she was somewhat nervous early in the game, but then relaxed.

“It’s always the nerves that get us,” she said. “It’s just the nerves that get to both teams, but I calmed down as the game went on.”

The Bulldogs (4-6-2 and 3-3 in league) leaped ahead 4-3 in the top of the seventh when Porras (two hits) opened the frame with a double to center field off Del Castillo.

Del Castillo’s wild pitch moved Porras to third base and when sophomore Victoria Sanchez lifted a sacrifice fly to center field, Burbank pulled ahead by one run.

Burroughs, which finished with 14 hits, scored two runs in the first inning as Del Castillo’s double to left field brought home senior Mia Storer, who delivered a bloop single to left for a 1-0 edge.

Citlali Mendez unloads a throw during a one-run win over Burbank. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

It became 2-0 on Valenzuela’s base hit up the middle as senior Sierra Harvey, who singled, crossed home plate.

The Bulldogs, who managed five hits, evened it at 2-2 in the second inning as the Indians (7-5 and 5-1 in league) committed three of their four errors.

“It seemed like we played pepper with the left side of their infield today for the first few innings,” Burbank coach Mike Delaney said. “You’ve just got to be able to make some adjustments, but it took us a long time to figure that out. It’s an innings game. You can’t waste innings.”

Delaney, who saw his club commit two miscues, continued: “There was a good ebb and flow to the game. We rattled them and they rattled us. Hats off to them. They executed when they had to,” he said. “We battled and that’s what I love about this team. They find ways to score. Every single inning has to matter.”

Desi Gomez, who usually plays third base, was behind the plate for the Bulldogs. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Senior Izzy Sanchez had a run-scoring infield hit in the top of the second frame that scored sophomore Erika Montoya, who led off with a  triple to right field.

In the bottom half of the second, Burroughs reclaimed the lead, 3-2, when Storer’s bloop base hit to center field plated Skinner, who singled to left field.

Burbank evened it at 3-3 with a run in the fifth inning when senior Alex Davis lined a bullet to center field that eluded Storer as she raced around the bases for a home run.

In the sixth inning, Storer made a spectacular diving catch of a potential double or perhaps triple off the bat of Montoya.

The Indians collected 14 hits with five runs against the visiting Bulldogs. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Del Castillo was the winning pitcher after working seven innings, striking out one, walking two and hitting a batter.

Del Castillo induced Davis and senior Amaya Broyls to bounce out to third base in the first inning and after hitting senior Desi Gomez with a pitch, saw sophomore Lily Stell ground out to third.

Del Castillo set down the order in the third inning when Broyls was out after making contract with the ball while out of the batter’s box, Gomez popped to second base and Stell flied to right field.

Del Castillo tossed another 1-2-3 inning in the fourth when Montoya grounded to shortstop, while junior Tiffany Estrada and Izzy Sanchez each bounced back to the box.

Del Castillo’s third perfect frame was the sixth as Montoya lined to center field, while Estrada bounced to third base and Izzy Sanchez grounded to shortstop.

Porras was tagged with the setback, fanning four and hitting three batters across seven innings.

Porras allowed at least one hit in every inning except the fifth when she faced four batters, with Del Castillo the only base runner after getting hit with the pitch.

Part of the 14-hit Indians’ offensive barrage included base hits for Williams and senior Morgan Mersola.

Burbank Softball Loses Tough One To Visiting Arcadia 7-5

By Rick Assad

 

Playing shorthanded is a tough way to operate, but the Burbank High softball team had to against Arcadia on Monday afternoon.

Even so, the Bulldogs found enough intestinal fortitude to rally from four runs down in the sixth inning, but then gave up two runs in the seventh inning and lost 7-5 in a Pacific League contest at McCambridge Park.

Alyssa Porras went seven innings and took the 7-5 loss. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank managed four hits off sophomore Sophia Garzona, who went seven innings, striking out six and walking three.

Senior Alyssa Porras toured seven frames for the Bulldogs, surrendering 11 hits with three strikeouts and two walks with two hit batters.

The Bulldogs (2-4 and 1-1 in league) were without the services of seniors Nikki Davis and Emily Monterrey along with junior Savannah Benson.

It seemed late in the game that Porras may have been tired, but wasn’t taken out by Burbank coach Mike Delaney.

“We thought about it a couple of times. But where they were in the lineup versus what she was doing with those kids, it didn’t ever come up to it at that point,” Delaney said. “She battled. She missed a few spots, but we didn’t help her with our flat-footedness today. We were flat-footed with our defense.”

The Bulldogs cut Arcadia’s lead to 5-4 with a three-run fifth inning as seven batters trotted to the plate.

Base hits were hard to come by for the Bulldogs, who managed four. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

With none out, senior Izzy Sanchez lined a sharp base hit to center field as senior Sarah Garelick, who walked and sophomore Erika Montoya, who collected a single to left field, both scored.

Senior Alex Davis was safe on a fielder’s choice that scored a run as pinch runner, junior Tiffany Estrada, who came in for Porras, drew a walk.

“Our outfield didn’t help us and our hitting didn’t help us,” Delaney pointed out. “We did not hit in key situations. That’s what we’ve been kind of stressing the last couple of games. We’re all trying to hit the ball over the fence. You hit the ball in the air here, it’s just an out.”

The Apaches (9-1-1 and 2-0 in league) bolted ahead 7-5 in the seventh when senior Deja Westbrook drilled a single to left with one out. Westbrook moved to second base on a grounder by senior Helena Simpson.

Burbank’s infield defense was solid against the Apaches. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

A clanging double to left center by freshman Morgan Howey (two hits) scored Westbrook and Howey crossed the plate when senior Karly Gills roped a base hit to center field.

Burbank evened it at 5-5 with a run in the sixth inning as sophomore Lily Stell clubbed a long one-out triple to right center, and Garelick’s grounder drove in the run.

The Apaches opened up a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Simpson’s single up the middle scored sophomore Averi Wong, who singled to left field with one out.

The Bulldogs tied it at 1-1 in the first inning when Davis led off with a booming triple to right center and crossed the plate on a sacrifice bunt from senior Amaya Broyls.

“I think our hitting is what drives us,” Broyls said. “When we’re hitting line drives in the gap, and when we’re getting good hits off her, it gives us a lot momentum and that’s what helps us.”

Broyls then added: It’s been hard with all the rain and we’ve been trying to practice and some girls have been hurt,” she said. “Being a catcher. Being a senior. Being a captain. There’s a lot of pressure and I feel like I need to lead the team along with the other captains. We have the younger players. We all need to step up and do our job.”

A two-run third inning by Arcadia made it 3-1 as Westbrook lined an inside-the-park homer to center field that plated Wong, who was safe on a force out.

The Apaches’ advantage became 5-1 in the fifth inning when Wong’s triple to right center knocked home sophomore Delaney Prater (two hits), who doubled to left center and Westbrook’s grounder scored Wong.

Burroughs, Burbank Softball Primed For Something Special

By Rick Assad

 

Because of the talent available, it would seem that if the Burbank High and Burroughs softball teams don’t qualify for the CIF Southern Section playoffs, its respective seasons will not be considered very successful.

Burbank is coming off a campaign in which it went 16-12 overall and 10-4 for third place in the Pacific League.

It’s all for one and one for all as the Bulldogs ready for the Pacific League season. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Bulldogs played in a Division IV wild-card match against Norwalk and fell 4-2.

Burroughs went 14-5-1 and 12-2 for second in league and after defeating Bonita 2-0 in a Division III opening-round game, lost to Redlands 4-0 in the second round.

“I believe that we’ll do fairly well this year,” Burroughs coach Wes Tanigawa said. “I brought up a few new girls from the JV. Overall we should be pretty successful, but softball is the way it is and you never know how the ball is going to go.”

The Indians are gunning for another CIF Southern Section playoff appearance. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Tanigawa is optimistic about this squad.

“These girls that we have are a really good core group. They work together. They pick each other up,” he noted.

Tanigawa also likes that the team doesn’t rely on one aspect of the game.

“I don’t really necessarily see one thing as our strength,” he pointed out. “We’ve lost our star pitcher [Presley Miraglia]. We have pitching. I’ve got a freshman who is looking really good. I brought up a few girls with hopefully a couple of bats.”

To date, Burroughs lost to Newbury Park 8-0 in the Suzanne Manlet Tournament and collected a 3-2 victory over San Fernando in the same tourney.

The Indians begin league play on March 5 when Pasadena makes a visit and will host Burbank on March 29 and travel to the Bulldogs on April 25.

Beside Miraglia, other key performers that graduated includes outfielder Hannah Talavera and second baseman Nikki Ricciardella.

The most valued commodity is always pitching and the Bulldogs, who lost Allie Benson to graduation, have a good one in senior Alyssa Porras.

Infield play is always vital, so the Bulldogs practice being perfect. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Mike Delaney, the Burbank coach, thinks this should be a productive season.

“If we play to our ability, and we have some kids that step up, we can compete with anybody,” h said. “Our kids don’t shy away from competing with anybody. We play a tough tournament schedule because it helps us in league. CV is probably the team to beat this year.”

Like Tanigawa, Delaney is also optimistic.

“If we play the way we can, we’re a top three team for sure,” he said. “If we play even better than that, we can be a top two. I’m not discounting this team from anything.”

Burbank has lost to Louisville 6-4 in the Hart Tournament and fell to Calabasas 6-4 in the same tourney. The Bulldogs commence league action on March 5 when they host Glendale.

Backing up Porras, who worked many innings in 2018, and will be asked to toe the rubber for 200 innings this season, will be junior Savannah Benson, Allie’s younger sister.

Chloe Bookmyer will be asked to be a team leader for the Indians. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

A key member will be senior Alex Davis, who will be the primary shortstop.

Senior Amaya Broyls, a member of the volleyball team, will see the majority of the time behind the plate for Burbank, which lost to graduation first baseman Erin Lashkari, infielder/outfielder Anysia Gonzalez and outfielder/second baseman Macie Jensen.

Senior Nikki Davis and senior Carly Oldfield will battle for first base.

Senior Desiree Gomez is the primary third baseman and will relieve Broyls on occasion as the catcher.

Sophomore Erika Montoya, who played on the basketball team, will play second base.

Burbank is aiming for the top spot in the Pacific League after finishing third last season. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank’s outfield will include senior Sarah Garelick in left field, senior Izzy Sanchez in right field and sophomore Victoria Sanchez in center field.

The rest of the team includes senior Emily Monterrey, who also played on the basketball team, will play at first and third base and act as the designated player.

Senior Siena Fagiani will be used in a utility role and designated player, while freshman Bella Scozzola will play first base, third base and the outfield.

Junior Tiffany Estrada will see time in the outfield and be used as a utility player. Junior Jordyn Rivero will play in the outfield, utility and designated player, and freshman Elizabeth Zamora will play in the outfield, designated player and utility.

The Indians go over infield practice knowing its value. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Indians have four starting pitchers and they will need to at least come close to what Miraglia, a member of the Long Beach State women’s softball team, accomplished in her stellar career.

The two with the most experience in the circle are junior Sidnie Dabaddie and junior Isabella Kam.

The other two hurlers are sophomore Dyani Del Castillo, who played on the basketball team and freshman Kelsey Acosta.

The catching chore will fall upon the dependable shoulders of senior Megan Williams.

The projected infield for Burroughs will have senior Sierra Harvey at first base, senior Morgan Mersola at second base, sophomore Alyssa Valenzuela at shortstop and junior Memorie Munoz at third base.

The Indians’ outfield will consist of senior Hannah Skinner in left field, senior Mia Storer in center field and junior Chloe Bookmyer, the league’s Most Valuable Player Hitter, in right field.

The rest of the lineup will have senior Jillian Kukawski, also a member of the basketball team at third base, senior Lauryn Valenzuela at shortstop, senior Citlali Mendez at shortstop, junior Sami Fiorella in the infield and catcher and sophomore Kaitlyn Cisneros in the infield and utility.

Burroughs Girls Basketball Fends Off Host Burbank 51-41

By Rick Assad

 

Basketball is usually filled with momentum shifts, and it was as a 20-point eruption in the second quarter by the Burroughs High girls’ basketball team helped tilt its Pacific League finale against host Burbank in favor of the Indians.

Osanna Tirityan scored a game-high 20 points for Burbank in a 51-41 loss to Burroughs. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Kayla Wrobel, Nicole Rumfola and Faith Boulanger each dropped in 11 points in a 51-41 decision over the Bulldogs on Thursday night before a capacity crowd.

“Our league is a tough league,” Burroughs coach Vicky Oganyan said. “If you expect to not come in and have a tough game, you really don’t know what’s happening.”

Oganyan doesn’t mind using the bench and has confidence in that group.

“We always tell them. Be ready to go. If your number gets called and you go in the game, it’s your opportunity to perform,” she said.

Kayla Wrobel (#11) and Nicole Rumfola (#0) battle for the ball. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burbank (15-13 and 6-8 in league) came out strong and took a 9-7 lead into the second quarter as four players scored, including senior swingman Osanna Tirityan, who tallied two of her game-high 20 points.

Tirityan delivered 14 points in the second half.

The Indians (21-7 and 10-4 in league), who outrebounded the Bulldogs, 41-30, hit seven of 15 attempts in the second quarter.

Burroughs outscored Burbank 20-10 in the period and led 27-19 heading into the locker room.

The Indians, who will likely play a CIF Southern Section playoff game on the road, committed eight turnovers at the half, but only three in the second half.

Emily Monterrey looks for an open player while being guarded by Ariana Farias. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Six players scored for Burroughs, which ended the regular season with three consecutive victories after falling to visiting Crescenta Valley 32-29 on Jan. 22, including Jillian Kukawski, who had all eight points in the second frame.

Kukawski, a senior shooting guard, nailed two key three-pointers and a hoop.

A trey from Kukawski at the 4:40 mark made it 19-14 and Kukawski’s three-pointer with 2:10 left pushed the lead to 25-14.

The third quarter belonged to Rumfola, a senior forward who scored six points as the Indians (34.6 percent on 17 of 49 from the field) forged ahead 40-31.

Rumfola grabbed nine rebounds and handed out four assists while Wrobel, a sophomore power forward, snatched a game-best 14 rebounds.

Kayla Wrobel, who scored 11 points, is shown going to the basket. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Tirityan tallied nine points in the third period for the Bulldogs (14 of 41 from the floor for 34.1 percent).

Boulanger, a sophomore center, had seven points at the half and canned one of the six three-pointers made by Burroughs.

“What it came down to is that they handed us such a bad beating [71-34] the first time we played them and that in this game my girls needed to know that they can compete,” Burbank co-coach Jett Del Mundo said. “We started out well and they made a run and it took us a little while to regain our composure. But then we answered and our will to win was there and we fought.”

A third and final three-pointer from sophomore shooting guard Erika Montoya (nine points) sliced the Indians’ margin to 40-34 with 5:45 left, but Rumfola’s trey with 2:05 showing gave Burroughs a 48-38 advantage.

Neither squad was especially effective at the free-throw line as Burroughs made 11 of 24 for 45.8 percent and Burbank, which hit five treys and isn’t guaranteed a CIF playoff spot, connected on eight of 18 for 44.4 percent.

Junior guard Ariana Farias tossed in five points, junior guard A’sia Morales added four points and senior forward Jhazmin Piitts tacked on one point for the Indians.

Senior center Sofia Aslanyan scored five points and junior guard Briana Castro had three points for Burbank.

Sophomore small forward Jayla Flowers along with senior point guard Emily Monterrey each added two points for the Bulldogs.

Burbank Girls Basketball Cruises To 59-43 Triumph Over Muir

By Rick Assad

 

A longtime starter and a key reserve were at the heart of Burbank High’s 59-43 victory over visiting Muir in a Pacific League girls’ basketball game on Friday night.

Senior center Sofia Aslanyan has been a three-year standout for the Bulldogs and was the offensive catalyst with a game-best 21 points, while sophomore small forward Jayla Flowers added five points, but more importantly grabbed key rebounds, handed out numerous assists and was a defensive sparkplug.

Burbank, which made 23 of 75 shot attempts for 30.6 percent and pulled down 64 rebounds, took control early and was ahead 11-8 after eight minutes and bulled in front 26-16 at the intermission.

“With Jayla we’re trying to find what’s her best role,” Burbank co-coach Jett Del Mundo said. “She adds so much more when she comes off the bench. She’s able to disrupt the opponent. She can really flourish in that role.”

Senior center Sofia Aslanyan, shown in a recent game, dropped in a game-best 21 points against Muir. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

A bucket by Aslanyan with 1:35 remaining in the second quarter gave the Bulldogs, who canned nine of 18 free throws, a 23-16 edge.

The Bulldogs entered the fourth quarter ahead 39-32, but broke the contest open with a 20-point fourth quarter.

“I hate to say it, but during the season the third quarter has been the worst quarter,” said Del Mundo, who was Pasadena’s coach before coming to Burbank.

A three-pointer by junior shooting guard Brianna Castro (11 points) with 4:26 showing in the third period pushed Burbank’s advantage to 36-22.

Tirityan’s hoop with 5:56 left on the ticker in the fourth quarter made it 46-33 and Castro’s third and final trey with 2:58 left in the fourth period made it 54-37.

Aslanyan failed to score in the first quarter, but then tacked on nine points in the second period.

Senior swingman Osanna Tirityan, who dropped in 14 points, tallied three points in the initial frame as the Bulldogs converted five of 22 shots (22.7 percent) from the field.

“We want to control the rhythm of the game,” Del Mundo said of the contest’s pace. “They have a very nice freshman post player (Olivia Hodges).”

Senior swingman Osanna Tirityan, pictured in a recent match, scored 14 points in a 16-point win over the Mustangs. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Tirityan added four points in the second quarter as Burbank (12-7 and 4-2 in league) made six of 19 (31.5 percent) from the floor.

Muir (4-8 and 0-6 in league) was paced by first-year power forward/center Hodges, who dropped in 18 points, including 12 points in the second half.

The Mustangs, who shot 24 percent (13 of 54) from the field and yanked down 37 caroms, came within seven points at the end of the third quarter and drew within six points, but then saw the Bulldogs pull ahead by 16 points.

Muir, which drilled 16 of 26 from the charity line, rallied in the third quarter, outscoring the Bulldogs 16-13 with Hodges tallying seven points and sophomore guard Jori Haleakala-Denson dropping in six of her 12 points.

Muir converted five of 28 shots (17.8 percent) in the opening half and improved slightly in the second half after hitting eight of 26 (30.7 percent).

The Bulldogs were successful 0n five of 16 shots (31.2 percent) in the third quarter and seven of 18 (38.8 percent) in the fourth period.

Senior point guard Emily Monterrey poured in five points for the Bulldogs, while junior center Adel Bandarian added two points and sophomore guard Erika Montoya tossed in one point.

Burbank Girls Hoops Can’t Keep Pace With Crescenta Valley

By Rick Assad

 

From the outset, it seemed that everything was going wrong for the Burbank High girls’ basketball team.

The Bulldogs trailed by six points heading into the second period, were down by 16 at the half and 14 points through three frames and eventually lost 53-43 to host Crescenta Valley on Friday evening in a Pacific League matchup.

“We didn’t handle their pressure very well,” said Burbank interim coach Bruce Breeden. “We didn’t come ready to play. They took it to us early. We fought back, but it’s too hard to come back from 12 and 14 point deficits.”

Senior small forward Osanna Tirityan and sophomore guard Erika Montoya each scored 12 points for the Bulldogs, who trailed 13-7 after one quarter and 30-14 at the intermission.

Burbank made four of 18 shots (22.2 percent) from the field at the break and 12 of 40 (30 percent) during the game, while Crescenta Valley drilled 15 of 59 (25.4 percent) from the floor.

The Bulldogs (8-5 and 2-2 in league) outscored the Falcons 12-10 in the third quarter and tallied 17 points to 13 points for the Falcons (7-5 and 3-1 in league) in the fourth frame.

Montoya’s three-pointer with 5:43 left in the game sliced Crescenta Valley’s advantage to 42-31.

Jayla Flowers, shown in a recent game, scored 10 points in a 53-43 loss to Crescenta Valley. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

“She had kind of a breakout game offensively,” Breeden said of Montoya. “We look to her to continue that growth.”

When junior guard Brianna Castro (six points) knocked down a trey with 3:29 showing it trimmed the Falcons’ lead to 46-38.

Senior guard Georgina Kregorian scored 11 of her 16 points.

Kregorian nailed three of her four three-pointers in the opening period.

The Falcons made three of 12 (25 percent) from the floor and four of six from the free-throw line in the initial period.

The Falcons hit six of 18 (33.3 percent) from the floor in the second quarter with Kregorian scoring five points.

The Bulldogs hammered three of 10 (30 percent) from the field in the initial frame and one of eight (12.5 percent) in the second period, but made five of eight (62.5 percent) of their free throws.

Burbank was successful on six from three-point range and Crescenta Valley dropped in five treys.

On the night, Burbank converted 13 of 20 (65 percent) of its charity tosses, while Crescenta Valley hit 18 of 26 (69.2 percent).

Sophomore small forward Jayla Flowers (12 points) scored two points in the opening frame. Flowers then added five points in the second quarter and after not scoring in the third period, made five free throws in the fourth quarter.

Tirityan scored only two baskets, but was on the money from the free-throw line, making eight of 10.

Junior power forward Adrianna Cabrera had two points for the Bulldogs and senior point guard Emily Monterrey tossed in one point.

Crescenta Valley senior shooting guard Caity Bouchard tallied 12 of her 16 points in the second half and junior point guard Denise Dayag collected nine points.

Burbank, Burroughs Girls Basketball Seek CIF Playoffs

By Rick Assad

 

When it comes to girls’ basketball, Burroughs High and Burbank both have quality programs and strong coaching leadership.

The Indians are coming off a season in which they went 23-8 overall and 11-3 in the Pacific League while reaching the CIF Southern Section playoffs.

Burroughs lost a key player to graduation in Marin Grote, a 6-4 center, who averaged a double-double in points and rebounds and also played volleyball where she was a standout.

Osanna Tiritan should lead the Bulldogs in points and rebounds once again. Photo By: Edward Tovmassian

Currently Grote is at the University of Washington where she is on the women’s volleyball team.

“I expect our team to be prepared and competitive in every game,” longtime Burroughs coach Vicky Oganyan said. “As usual our league will be very tough. Arcadia, Crescenta Valley, Glendale, Burbank and Pasadena all are returning very good talent.”

It’s always exciting when the two city rivals meet.

Burroughs will host Burbank on Jan. 11 and the Bulldogs will host the Indians on Jan. 31.

The Indians, who are undefeated this season at 6-0, will very likely lean heavily on Faith Boulanger, a highly-skilled 5-11 sophomore center/power forward, who averaged 12.7 points with 7.3 rebounds and was selected all-league, first-team.

Despite being a freshman, Boulanger proved her worth early and was a major force on offensive and defensive.

Kayla Wrobel, a 5-10 sophomore power forward was a second-team, all-league pick after tossing in 5.4 points and 5.2 boards per game.

The Indians will be strong as usual and will fight for the top spot in the Pacific League. (Photo by © Ross A. Benson)

Dyani Del Castillo, a 5-8 sophomore shooting guard averaged 5.6 points and 4.4 caroms which translated into being tabbed honorable mention.

Ariana Farias is a 5-3 senior point guard and will lead the offense for Oganyan.

This job is critical because Farias sets the tone.

There are six returners from last year’s team and they include seniors Nicole Rumfola, a 5-9 small forward, Camryn Lotka, a 5-7 shooting guard, Emily Gutierrez, a 5-4 point guard and Jillian Kukawski, a 5-7 shooting guard.

There are two juniors on the squad and they are Sophie Hawkins, a 5-7 shooting guard and A’sia Morales, a 5-7 shooting guard.

The rest of the team will consist of seniors Jhazmin Pitts and Jordyn Jackson and freshman Noor Fahs.

It’s a certainty that the best player on the floor for the Bulldogs, who went 10-18 and 5-9 in league and are 5-2 this season, will be Osanna Tirityan, a 5-9 senior small forward.

“She does everything for us,” Burbank interim coach Bruce Breeden said of Tirityan, who averaged 14 points and 11 rebounds and was named all-league, first-team three consecutive years.

Sofia Aslanian, a 5-10 senior power forward, is likewise a three-year starter. “Sofia controls the boards and gives us leadership,” Breeden said.

Jayla Flowers is a 5-7 sophomore shooting guard and junior Brianna Castro is a 5-5 shooting guard.

“Jayla is a great athlete,” Breeden said of Flowers, who was an honorable mention. “Brianna is our best shooter.”

Also on the team will be Emily Monterrey, a 5-5 senior point guard, Jasmine Chavez, a 5-3 senior point guard and Roxy Payinid, a 5-6 sophomore point guard.

Rounding out the squad are Dakota Cortez, a 5-6 senior small forward, Adel Bandarian, a 5-9 junior power forward, Adrianna Cabrera, a 5-8 junior small forward and Kim Pimentel, a 5-4 sophomore point guard.

Rounding out the squad will be senior small forward Serlie Pouladian, senior small forward Knar Geghamya, junior small forward Val Martinez and sophomore guard Erika Montoya.

Burroughs, Burbank Girls Basketball Ready For Strong Seasons

By Rick Assad

When the Burroughs High and Burbank girls’ basketball teams take the floor, it’s with conviction that every game is winnable.

The Indians, 17-12 and 8-4 in the Pacific League, tied for second last season, will be paced by 6-foot-4 senior center Marin Grote and 5-3 junior point guard Arianna Farias.

“Both started last year and are expected to lead the way,” said Burroughs coach Vicky Oganyan, whose squad had its four-season run as the league champion snapped.

Grote, who will play volleyball for the University of Washington, averaged 9.4 points, 12.1 rebounds, 4.6 blocks, 1.3 assists and 1.1 steals.

Burroughs getting some practice time with senior center Marin Grote (#44) passing the ball. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Oganyan expects the Indians, who lost in the first round of the CIF Southern Section Division I-AA playoffs, to be competitive.

“The girls have had a good summer and fall by playing a lot of good competition,” she said. “Our focus will be being tough defensively, playing really hard and competing every second.”

It won’t be easy, but Oganyan believes the Indians will be in the hunt for the league title. “League should tough,” she noted. “There are a lot good coaches and good teams.”

The Indians will play in their own tournament and then begin league action on Jan. 3 at Arcadia.

Burroughs will play at longtime rival Burbank on Jan. 19 and host the Bulldogs on Feb. 8.

The Indians are loaded with junior guards who spent time on the floor like 5-2 Ayumi DeHerrera, 5-7 Jillian Kukawski, 5-6 Camryn Lotka, 5-5 Emily Gutierrez and 5-8 Nicole Rumfola, who will also see time at forward.

“All of these girls have improved and look forward to contributing,” Oganyan said.

Senior Jenny Galvan is a 5-3 guard coming up from the junior varsity who should help off the bench.

Burbank also worked on some of the fundamentals in practice. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

There are a number of talented sophomores such as 5-5 guard A’sia Morales, who is a “slasher, a good rebounder and a great defender,” according to Oganyan and 5-6 guard Sophie Hawkins, who is “being counted on as an outside shooter,” said Oganyan.

There are also freshmen and they include 5-7 guard Dyani Del Castillo, 5-11 forward Faith Boulanger and 5-9 forward Kayla Wrobel.

“Dyani is a great athlete who is everywhere on the court and a great rebounder, while Faith will be looked at as a scorer and Kayla is a great rebounder and has good instincts for the game,” Oganyan said.

Other first-year players include 5-5 guard Liliana Gonzalez, who plays solid defense according to Oganyan and 6-0 Sydney Martin, who will play the post.

Practice makes perfect, including dribbling and driving to the hoop. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The Bulldogs are coming off a campaign in which they posted a 14-15 overall record and 5-7 in the league, good for fifth place along with Arcadia.

The Bulldogs are 1-2 this season with losses to Saugus 52-47 and Lancaster 63-39 in the Brentwood Tournament and a win versus the Archer School for Girls 49-28 in the same tourney.

Second-year Burbank coach John Wells said “the league is fairly-well balanced and that no team should go undefeated,” and employs a four-guard offense, hoping this will add more scoring and passing.

For Burbank, which begins league action at Hoover on Jan. 3, hosts Burroughs on Jan. 19 and visits the Indians on Feb. 8, everything begins with 5-7 junior shooting guard Osanna Tirityan, who has been a force for two seasons.

“Osanna is a great scorer and a great rebounder,” said Wells of Tirityan, who averaged 16.3 points, 9.7 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 2.1 steals. “She’s an all-around player.

Tirityan has been named to the All-CIF Division II-A second team twice and All-League first team twice.

The Bulldogs race down the floor during a scrimmage. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Junior point guard Emily Monterrey, at 5-5, will also have the ball in her hands.

“Emily is a strong passer and likes to go to the basket,” Wells said.

Senior guard Sophia Jimenez is 5-5 and will add some offensive punch to the lineup as will 5-9 senior forward Kate Lynn Monterrey.

Sophomore guard Brianna Castro, at 5-4, is a very dependable shooter according to Wells.

The lone forward is 5-9 junior Sofia Aslanyan, who should contribute points and add muscle.

“Sofia is a strong offensive rebounder,” Wells said. “She has a strong post presence, but will be asked to play more than just the post.”

Coming off the bench is 5-4 junior guard Jasmine Chavez. “Jasmine is an aggressive defender and a good offensive slasher,” Wells noted.

Junior forward Dakota Cortez is 5-4 and can be counted upon to pick up stray balls.

“Dakota is a strong rebounder on both ends of the court,” Wells said. “She’ll dive for loose balls.”

Junior point guard Emily Monterrey is 5-5 and a “strong passer and goes hard to the basket,” according to Wells.

Despite being young, 5-5 freshman guard Jayla Flowers will contribute. “Jayla is an athlete and a great offensive rebounder,” Wells said. “She will be asked to guard the other team’s best player.”

Another young talent is 5-6 freshman forward Rukhshana Payind. “Rukhshana is a good offensive rebounder who runs the floor well,” Wells said.

Freshman guard Erika Montoya stands 5-3, but is still able to make herself into a crafty defender according to Wells.

Senior forward Amber Kassens is 5-5 and a relentless worker. “Amber is a good shooter and works hard on defense,” Wells said.

Junior guard Desi Gomez, at 5-3, will also be in the backcourt. “Desi is a spot-up shooter and a tough defender,” Wells said.

The rest of the squad includes 5-4 senior forward Kaylee Rivas, 5-1 senior guard Abisha Noriega and 5-6 senior forward Sabrina Feldman.