Hoping to become the first team in school history to win a CIF Southern Section title in football, the Burbank High Bulldogs came up just a little short Friday night, losing 31-21 to host Yorba Linda High in the Division 8 championship.
“We had a mission to accomplish and we didn’t do it,” Burbank coach Richard Broussard said.
Despite the loss, Broussard was proud of the season his team had.
“This group of kids are special. They did a lot for this school. From here on out, Burbank will be looked at differently,” he said.
Burbank (10-4) had a number of obstacles to overcome. Mother Nature was the biggest as heavy winds made it difficult to pass the ball.
Broussard said the winds made his team change strategy.
“It was tough to prepare for this,” Broussard said.
Burbank quarterback Guy Gibbs didn’t want to use the wind as an excuse.
“It’s football,” Gibbs said. “You’re supposed to play the game in any weather.”
Burbank was fortunate enough to see star receiver Forest Fajardo return from injury after missing two playoffs games. Also back was punter Danny Porras from a broken foot, who unfortunately had to kick into the wind on several of his punts.
On the downside, Burbank played without four-year starter Andy Reyes, who was the Pacific League Defensive Player of the Year as a junior. He did not play for undisclosed reasons.
Yorba Linda (12-2) scored the first touchdown of the game at the 8:18 mark as Jaydyn Webb was pushed into the end zone by his offensive line.
An official’s whistle blew far before Webb reached the end zone, but the officials later denied having called the play dead.
Burbank tied things at the 2:29 mark of the first quarter when Gibbs found Fajardo for a 14-yard touchdown.
Yorba Linda went back on top at the 10:23 mark of the second quarter when Webb scored on a two-yard run.
Webb scored once again from two yards out with 5:30 left in the first half, putting Yorba Linda up 21-7.
Burbank fought back, though. Nick Warren ran 42 yards right through the middle of the Mustangs’ defense with 3:22 left in the half to make it 21-14.
Warren also later intercepted a pass on the final play of the first half.
Burbank tied things up at the 7:19 mark of the third quarter when Gibbs hooked up with Drew Pendelton on a 23-yard touchdown.
Yorba Linda survived a pair of fourth down and one situations in the third quarter to help set up Webb’s fourth touchdown of the game, a six-yard run with 1:20 left in the period.
Burbank appeared to be in a position to come back and tie things up in the fourth quarter. However, a fumble that was recovered by Yorba Linda followed by a questionable pass interference call against the Bulldogs helped Yorba Linda set up a 18-yard field by Cole Magliano with 3:28 left to play.