Tag Archives: Girls Soccer

Rick’s Sports Corner: Maddie Riggs, UC Irvine’s Rising Golf Star

By Rick Assad

Every day offers an opportunity to make choices. Most of the time they are fairly mundane like what to have for breakfast, lunch or dinner or what to wear that day.

Sometimes they are more complicated and demand deeper thought because they are more important.

In the case of Maddie Riggs, she had to choose whether to play a sport she loved or switch to another upon entering college.

This was a real dilemma because Riggs was a gifted soccer player for four seasons at Burroughs High, leading the Indians in scoring and assists during her junior and senior years and was voted All-Area first-team both seasons.

“Maddie was tenacious as a soccer player,” said her father, Brady Riggs, who is the Burroughs girls’ soccer coach. “She was the consummate leader, always training at full speed, playing through injuries and demanding that level of commitment from her teammates.”

But Riggs also excelled on the Indians’ golf team across four seasons, earning All-Area first-team as a senior. For good measure, Riggs was a member of the softball squad as a freshman.

Maddie Riggs is entering her third season on the UC Irvine women’s golf team. (Photo courtesy Maddie Riggs)

So when Riggs, the Mike Torres Award winner which is given to the most outstanding two-sport female athlete at Burroughs, stepped foot onto the campus of the University of California Irvine, she had a weighty choice to make.

Riggs, who redshirted her freshman year, 2017-2018, opted to play golf and has flourished.

“In high school, soccer was my passion,” she said. “I had played soccer at a high level since I was eight years old and dedicated my entire life to the game.”

Riggs went on: “After I got a severe concussion my sophomore year I realized my soccer career would have to end eventually,” she said. “That was when I shifted my focus to college golf. I still love the beautiful game, but my future and my passion now is in golf.”

With the world on pause because of COVID-19, Riggs has been impacted.

“The safety of my family and I has been the priority so my time spent at golf has decreased dramatically,” she noted. “I have been putting on a mat in my room, hitting into a net in my backyard and working out consistently. Once courses opened a few weeks ago, I have practiced at the range, but haven’t played much golf. I’m trying to be as prepared as possible for the Western Amateur in Illinois at the end of July, which I will play in if it is safe to travel.”

Riggs, who tries to emulate the competitive attitude of Danielle Kang, a three-time winner on the LPGA tour including the Women’s PGA Championship in 2017, is entering her third season on the Anteaters’ team.

“I love golf because all the responsibility is on me. What attracts me most is I do not have to rely on teammates for success,” said Riggs, a Public Health Policy major who shot a career-best, 1-under par 71 at the Rebel Beach Tournament and finished a career-best, in which she tied for 10th place in the Gold Rush tourney hosted by Cal State Long Beach. “My success is determined by how much effort I put in, not how hard the rest of my team is working.”

Coincidentally, Maddie’s father, a PGA Top 100 Teacher, has also had a hand in her success at UCI.

A standout on the Burroughs High girls’ soccer team, Maddie Riggs is shown in a match versus Burbank. (Photo courtesy Maddie Riggs)

“My role is twofold,” he said. “First as her golf instructor teaching her all the technical aspects of the game and making adjustments to her mechanics as necessary.”

Riggs added: “That has now evolved into becoming her golf coach, supervising her practice sessions, helping her with strategy and learning the subtle nuances of playing on the highest level,” he said.

Riggs, a National Golf Coaches Association All-American Scholar, said her father’s experience and guidance has been a blessing.

“Having my dad as a coach is special to me. We have always had a great father-daughter relationship in sports and to have a coach who knows my golf game and me as a person better than anyone is a huge advantage,” she said.

Golf is demanding and exacting, but Riggs has been able to come out ahead. “Golf is a tough sport to master because it is challenging both technically and mentally,” she said. “You can have great technique, but you have to learn how to score which takes experience during competitive rounds.”

Maddie Riggs talking with her father, Brady, the Burroughs’ soccer coach and a Top 100 PGA Teacher. (Photo courtesy Maddie Riggs)

How does Riggs, who took golf seriously at age 16, attack a hole?

“I am a conservative player and I base my decisions on percentages,” she said. “For example, each club has a specific dispersion, so I aim based on how wide my miss is instead of going directly at the flags.”

What’s the one thing that Riggs can lean on at the course?

“The best part of my game is my ability to trust my shot shape and commit to intelligent targets,” she said. “I play a fade, so the ball curves left to right and it is consistent with all my clubs.”

Riggs has been able to play well because she isn’t concerned with the other players.

“Chasing the leader adds pressure, but you cannot control how they are going to play so you have to focus on what you can control which is the next shot,” she said.

Riggs hasn’t played in front too often, but thinks that there’s pressure.

“I haven’t been in the lead very often, but I think it would be easier,” she explained. “As the leader, the tournament is yours to lose or win instead of coming from behind which requires other players to not play as well.”

Golf is a game of patience, which Riggs has. “One trait that makes me excel at golf is the mantra my dad has told me since I was little: “the only thing you can control is your effort and your attitude.” I apply this to all aspects of my life, but it is especially valuable in golf.”

Riggs continued: “I put all my effort into every round of golf regardless of if I am having a good day,” she said. “And it is even more important to have a good attitude on the course when you’re struggling. I never give up on a round and I think that mentality of grinding gives me a competitive edge in golf. I have to give soccer some credit because regardless of the score during a game, you never give up and that’s what I do in golf.”

Though lofty, Riggs in time would like to join the LPGA tour. “I believe that I can play on tour. I have only been playing highly competitive golf for a short amount of time and feel I have not reached my full potential yet,” she said. “I know that I have the work ethic and technical ability to play on tour. I just need more experience in competition.”

Rick’s Sports Corner: Lauryn Bailey, Burroughs High’s Soccer Wizard, Survivor

By Rick Assad

Based on talent, overall skill and results, Lauryn Bailey is a veritable magician on the pitch.

In three seasons as a forward for the Burroughs High girls’ soccer team, the soon-to-be senior has scored an eye-popping 67 goals and handed out an incredible 31 assists.

Now that’s truly impressive, but there’s a backstory to her journey. “I’m the third of four girls in my family. My oldest sister [Taylor] has played soccer since she was four [she’s almost 23 ] so I grew up going to her games and wanted to be just like her,” Bailey said. “I love the footwork, the head-on challenges, watching a play we’ve practiced tirelessly unfold on the field, the feeling you get when you “get it in the net,” the sound of the crowd…I love it all.”

Lauryn Bailey (No. 21) is a generational talent according to Brady Riggs, the Burroughs High soccer coach. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Taylor Bailey was part sister and part inspiration, playing soccer four seasons at Burroughs and one at Pierce Junior College.

But there’s more to Bailey’s story.

“I grew up loving the game because of my sister so I naturally gravitated to it at a very young age,” she said. “Unfortunately, I didn’t get started until late though, due to an illness. I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Wilm’s Tumor at two and a half years old – yep, cancer of the kidney and it had moved to my lung too. No fun! Eight months of daily treatment and years of monitoring my progress before I was officially a survivor and released to play sports. So at the ripe age of eight, I was on my first team!”

Bailey continued: “I studied the game a lot,” she admitted. “I watch the pros play and I try to mimic their moves. I’ll see something in a game on TV and go outside and keep practicing until I get it. Kinda weird, but that’s just me. I’ve had some great coaches that have invested a lot of time in me, too. I’ve learned how to read the field very well and I do a pretty good job at setting myself up for plays, both offensively and defensively because of that.”

Burroughs, along with Arcadia and Crescenta Valley, are the three elite teams in the Pacific League.

Lauryn Bailey is a prolific goal scorer for the Indians. (Photo courtesy Lauryn Bailey)

In Bailey’s freshman season, the Indians went 15-3-3 and 9-1-2 in league as she contributed 18 goals with five assists and was named All-Area first-team.

As a sophomore and one of the captains, Burroughs fashioned a 16-4-2 mark and captured the league banner with a 12-1-1 record, something truly rare for the girls’ program, as Bailey knocked home 25 goals with 15 assists and was rewarded by being tabbed All-Area first-team and All-League first-team.

In her junior campaign, the Indians went 13-6-2 and 10-3-1 in league play with Bailey, again as one of the captains, tallying 24 goals and 11 assists which resulted in her being selected Co-Player of the Year, All-Area first-team and All-League first-team.

Brady Riggs, the Burroughs coach, realizes he has a treasure. “Lo [Lauryn] is a generational talent,” Riggs said. “There’s nothing she can’t do at an incredibly high level. The hardest skill in soccer is to score goals. Lo is a natural goal scorer. She can win games by herself. We won’t see another talent like her in a long time.”

There’s no stopping Lauryn Bailey on the pitch. (Photo courtesy Lauryn Bailey)

Bailey wished the school year wasn’t trimmed because of the worldwide pandemic.

“My junior year in general was good,” she said. “Disappointing that it was cut short due to COVID-19, but grateful my family and friends have all stayed safe and healthy.”

Bailey then added: “As for the season, we fell short. We knew early on we had some big shoes to fill as we had just lost some great players that played key positions,” she said. “We gained some good talent on our team, we just didn’t click and play as a team. That will be the focus as we prepare for next year, senior year!”

Bailey continued: “We’ve trained hard and have too much talent to let a repeat of last season take us out,” she noted. “Pacific League champs, CIF….I plan on going out with a bang and I know my fellow seniors feel the same way.”

Bailey did say COVID-19 has had some affect on the upcoming campaign. “The lack of opportunities to condition and stay in shape have definitely affected our abilities to bond and grow as a team,” she said.

In all three seasons, Bailey and her team have qualified for the CIF Southern Section playoffs.

The Indians lost in the second round during her first two seasons and in the opening round as a junior.

Bailey said that it’s extra special playing the more talented league teams. “There’s obviously more reward in playing the better teams and taking the “W” home against a stronger opponent, but the goal is get the win, regardless of how well or not so well the other team may be,” she said.

Fearless, Bailey prefers digging in and getting dirty. “Oh, hands down a physical match,” she said of the type of game she likes to play. “I love a good challenge. The harder they play, the harder I want to play. I love the energy and adrenaline rush a good match delivers. I get amped just thinking about it.”

What kind of mind-set does Bailey, who competed in track and field as a freshman and plays basketball for fun as well as the cardio benefit, have entering a match?

“In general, I’m pretty calm and even-tempered and that rarely changes in a game setting,” she said. “Some coaches knock me for the lack of emotion I exude, but that’s just me. Call it my game face, that’s just how I am. I try not to overthink it, stay out of my own head and just play the game I know how to play.”

Bailey is a team-first player, but also realizes that her presence on the pitch is essential if the Indians are to fare well.

“I hope it means the same for the team as it means for me,” she said. “Trust. Integrity. Talent. Leadership and excellence. At the end of the day, we’re a team. None of us are any good without all of us. Everyone has their role, their skill and we expect each other to bring that to each and every game. Sure, we get frustrated, might make a bad play or shoot off the post a time or two. We get annoyed and may be short tempered in the heat of it all, but if we keep our eyes on the prize and strive to work together, encourage, build strength not just around the game, but as women athletes, we’ve all won! I love this game, but I love this team just as much.”

Burbank, Hoover Girls Soccer Match Concludes With No Goals

By Rick Assad

It wasn’t for a lack of desire or skill or motivation that prevented the Burbank High girls’ soccer team and its opponent, Hoover, from scoring in Friday’s Pacific League match.

It was that nearly two weeks worth of rust had accumulated on both squads and that was the primary culprit in a 0-0 stalemate at Kemp-Kallem Field.

The last time the Bulldogs took the pitch was December 19 in a 7-0 loss to host Crescenta Valley. Hoover’s last action was December 23 when it traveled to play Alemany.

Burbank, shown in a match versus rival Burroughs, played to a 0-0 tie against visiting Hoover. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“We just came out flat,” Burbank coach Pablo Diaz said. “We didn’t practice during the break. Our first practice was Monday, then we had a practice on Thursday and today just coming from the break, some of the girls were slow and they told me they were out of shape.”

Diaz added: “They came in and they were flat,” he noted. “But you’ve got to give it to them (Hoover). They played well and they made no mistakes in the back. We had a few chances that we should have put in the net and we didn’t. That’s the nature of the game.”

There were a few decent scoring opportunities for the Bulldogs, but they were not seized.

Several players stood out and included senior goalie Lindsey Miller, senior Ani Akopyan, senior Emma Molloy, junior Roxy Payind, junior Katie Molloy and sophomore Madie Chase for the Bulldogs (1-1-3 and 1-1-2 in league).

“They were trying to take it on their own,” Diaz said. “I have two or three players that when they see that the combination is not there and the touch is not there and they try to play two or three touches, then they say, it’s not there and I’m going to score.”

For the Tornadoes (4-5-1 and 0-3-1 in league), senior goalie Elizabeth Ghazanchian, senior midfielder Madeline Coopersmith, senior defender Kassandra Martinez, senior midfielder Melanie Torres and junior forward Jazzmin Simmons, all performed well.

Payind’s 30-yarder in the sixth minute was off target and in the 11 minute, Chase’s 20-yarder also missed.

Emma Molloy’s 15-yarder in the 15th minute was off and so was Katie Molloy’s 45-yard free kick in the 17th minute.

Emma Molloy’s 35-yarder in the 21st minute didn’t hit the target and Chase’s 35-yarder drifted too far left in the 26th minute.

Hoover finally broke the streak when Simmons unloaded a 35-yard free kick in the 29th minute, but Emma Molloy responded with a 25-yard kick a minute later.

After a throw in the during the 32nd minute, Torres contributed a 15-yard attempt followed by a 15-yard blast from Simmons, two minutes later.

The opening half came to a conclusion on a corner kick from Katie Molloy in the 39th minute.

The Bulldogs took the first three kicks of the second half as Payind had a 25-yarder in the 41st minute and was followed in the 42nd minute by a 30-yarder by Chase that sailed too far right. Payind tossed in a 30-yarder in the 43rd minute, but it was much too high.

Hoover struck back as Martinez uncorked a 40-yarder in the 51st minute that didn’t have enough on it and Coopersmith’s 25-yarder three minutes later, was too wide.

Payind’s breakaway from 35 yards was wide left in the 56th minute and in the 57th minute, Payind’s 30-yarder was again too far left. Payind’s 25-yarder hit the football goal post behind the net in the 61st minute.

Chase’s 15-yarder in the 64th minute missed the mark and Payind’s 25-yarder was wide left, two minutes later.

A 40-yarder from Torres in the 69th minute failed to find the back of the net and Coopersmith’s 20-yarder a minute later also didn’t hit the net.

A 35-yarder from Torres in the 70th minute was off the mark and less than a half minute later, Emma Molloy’s 30-yard was also off target.

In the 73rd minute, Chase added a 25-yarder and in the 77th minute, Katie Molloy delivered a 30-yard penalty kick.

The match ended on Chase’s 35-yarder in the 79th minute which was wide right.

Burroughs Girls Soccer Deadlocked 1-1 Versus Crescenta Valley

By Rick Assad

A goal was scored early and a goal was tallied late in Friday’s Pacific League clash between a pair of girls’ soccer heavyweights at Memorial Field.

The second tally, a header in the 77th minute, by Lily Gonzalez, practically guaranteed the match between defending league champion Burroughs High and Crescenta Valley would end in a 1-1 deadlock.

Lauryn Bailey, shown trying to control the ball, set up the tying goal from Lily Gonzalez. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The match-tying goal was set up on a corner kick from junior forward Lauryn Bailey, who directed the ball perfectly so that Gonzalez’s 10-yarder would land directly into the net.

“[Lo] Lauryn and I were just like pushing each other to get that goal in,” said Gonzalez, a junior midfielder. “We know we needed that goal to tie and CV’s one of our hardest competions out there and that was like one of the last plays of the game.”

Gonzalez then added: “I had to put everything in it, so I decided to head the ball because it was going right toward me. I had a girl on me and then I kind of backed up and headed it.”

Bailey realized the importance of the match and situation. “”I knew it was a chance to tie up the game, so I knew I had to place it the right way, inside the sticks,” she said.

Olivia Cashman (No. 2) and Gabby Morales (No. 6) are on the run for the Indians in a match against the Falcons. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The only other score came in the fifth minute when Crescenta Valley senior Sarah Gabon received a corner kick and upon locating the ball, squared it and drilled a 15-yard rocket that handed the always-tough Falcons a 1-0 lead.

The Indians are 2-1-1 in all matches and 1-0-1 in league.

Today Burroughs is playing a doubleheader in the prestigious Best in the West Tournament and will face Downey and Murrieta Mesa.

The Falcons are 2-0-2 overall and 1-0-1 in league and will host the Indians on January 17 with a 3:15 p.m. start.

Crescenta Valley is also in the Best in the West tourney and will play Royal and Beckman on Saturday.

The play was physical at times. Lily Gonzalez and Madison Jacques would not give an inch. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

In between these two tallies there were more than enough opportunities for both sides to find the back of the net, but neither did.

Nothing developed off a corner kick by Falcon senior Kathryn Thamasian in the fourth minute.

In the 14th minute, Gonzalez ripped a 35-yarder which was followed a minute later by Thamasian’s corner kick and junior Ashlin Cuesta’s 15-yard header failed to find the net for the Falcons.

Bailey’s 46-yard free kick came up short in the 17th minute and in the 22nd minute three Indians tried their luck, but likewise came up empty as Gonzalez blasted a 20-yarder, Bailey a 20-yard follow-up and senior midfielder Olivia Cashman unloaded a 35-yarder.

The match, per usual when these two giants take the pitch, was physical at times. Several girls on both teams found themselves on the grass including Cashman, who was kicked in the back of her leg and after a minute or so prone, walked off the field and had her right ankle retaped.

Lily Gonzalez tries to get around Dana Ryan. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“We’re going to play hard and they’re going to play hard. We know that going in. It goes with the territory,” Burroughs coach Brady Riggs said. “The last half of the first half and the last 20 minutes of the game we played much better. After we got into the flow we played much better. I expected them [Burroughs] to play until the final minute.”

In the 26th minute, Gonzalez unloaded a 25-yard bullet and a minute later junior Julianna Cheney added a 25-yarder for Crescenta Valley.

Senior defender Alex Mills delivered a 29-yard penalty kick in the 34th minute for the Indians that sailed too high over the crossbar.

Four minutes later, Bailey tossed in a 20-yarder and then a 23-yard free kick in the 39th minute, while Gonzalez missed from point-blank range in the same frame.

“Definitely with CV we want to play harder because they’re one of the top along with us,” Bailey said. “They’re physicality just wants us to mentally play harder.”

Crescenta Valley junior Dana Ryan’s 25-yard strike in the 45th minute ventured high and Thamasian’s 25-yarder missed in the 50th minute as did Cuesta’s header in the same stanza. Gonzalez added a 10-yarder in the 52nd minute.

Crescenta Valley sophomore Kaisa Lindman-Marshall missed the target from 25 yards in the 55th minute and teammate, junior Nataly Serrano, likewise missed the mark from 30 yards in the 57th minute.

The Indians had the next three opportunities and included a 35-yard boot from Bailey in the 62nd minute, Gonzalez on a 25-yard penalty kick that struck the top of the net in the 67th minute and Gonzalez’s 30-yarder that drifted wide right in the same frame.

The Falcons had the next two strikes and they both came in the 74th minute as Cheney’s 35-yarder drilled the football right upright and Cheney’s 30-yarder also failed to locate the net.

Burroughs Girls Soccer Season Concludes After 4-2 Loss To Hemet

By Rick Assad

 

In only a handful of matches this season did the Burroughs High girls’ soccer team fall behind at the intermission.

On Friday night at Memorial Field in a CIF Southern Section Division IV playoff clash with Hemet, the Indians did and it cost them.

Despite two second-half goals from Lauryn Bailey, Burroughs’ season came to an end after falling 4-2.

“They were very strong in the back. They’re a good team,” Burroughs coach Brady Riggs said of Hemet. “Hat’s off to them. We didn’t lose to a team that we’re better than, for sure. We lost to a team that deserved to win.”

Freshman Samantha Valencia (#16) and Payden Searl (#6) both try to control the ball in a CIF second-round match with Hemet. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Riggs then added: “From my perspective, I couldn’t have asked for a better year. To achieve our goal of winning [the Pacific League] is awesome. I’m thrilled with the season and the kids,” he noted.

This historic campaign by the Indians (16-4-2) will long be remembered, given they claimed their first league banner in 26 years and also advanced to the second round of the playoffs.

Still the loss stung and was clearly evident on some of the seniors’ faces, including Abbie Riggs, a gritty and skilled player who put every once of energy and strength into each match.

Riggs, one of four captains, had a 37-yard free kick that came close, hitting the top of the cross bar in the 77th minute.

“We still won league. That’s cool. I’d like to go further to get Lily [Gonzalez] on the field,” said Riggs, a midfielder. “We lost speed in the back. It put a lot of pressure on the mids [midfielders]. We lost a defender. We were weak in the back and weak in the front. We were not our normal self.”

Senior defender Emily McHorney played her final game for the Indians, who fell to Hemet 4-2 on Friday. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Burroughs was missing Gonzalez, a sophomore midfielder who turned her right ankle in a 4-1 victory over Artesia on Wednesday in the opening round, and also junior defender Ava Kramer.

Besides the two goals, Bailey also had a potential tally from 10 yards in the 26th minute that hit the right goal post.

“We ended on a good note,” said Bailey, a gifted forward and captain. “We made it far. We wished we could have gone farther, but we all worked our hardest. We knew coming in they were a good team. We had players down, but that couldn’t let us play bad.”

There’s a reason Hemet (21-2-5) is the No. 3 seeded team in these playoffs and the No. 168th ranked team by the national sports website maxpreps.com, as junior midfielder/forward Payden Searl knocked home a 10-yarder in the 42nd minute for a 3-0 lead that slipped past junior goalie Stephanie Martinez.

Searl later scored on a 10-yarder in the 54th minute to make it 4-1 that also eluded Martinez.

Bailey’s goal from 35 yards in the 45th minute sliced Hemet’s advantage to 3-1.

Orla Giffen (#25) and Shadyn Skinner (#7) both fight for the ball. The Bulldogs won 4-2 which knocked out the Indians. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

In the 66th minute, the Indians, ranked No. 237 by the same website and seeded No. 11, inched closer as Riggs’ 45-yard free kick found Bailey, who positioned herself to unload a 10-yarder that found the back of the net, cutting Hemet’s lead to 4-2.

The Bulldogs, who entered the fray with a nine-match non-losing streak, played marvelous defense, especially when the Indians were close to moving the ball into the box.

Senior defender Emily McHorney, also a captain, wanted the season to continue.

“Early in the match I think we weren’t pressing as hard as we should have, marking our man,” she said. “We just had to get in the groove. There’s a lot of chances, but it didn’t happen. I’m really glad we won league this year. That was a big deal for us.”

The Bulldogs took a 1-0 lead in the 21st minute on a 15-yard tally from junior forward Reese Castanon that evaded freshman goalie Kaylin Casper, who was lifted in the second half.

Olivia Cashman (#2) and Brooklyn Autenrieth go nose-to-nose while Abbie Riggs makes her charge. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Hemet’s lead became 2-0 on a 15-yard goal by freshman midfielder/forward Elisha Avila in the 29th minute on a pass from Castanon that Casper couldn’t corral.

Junior midfielder/forward Shadyn Skinner had a 20-yarder in the second minute for Hemet.

Freshman forward Megan Schmidt, who left late when she was involved in a head-to-head collision, drilled a 15-yarder in the third minute for the Indians, who came into the match having won nine consecutive games.

At times the contest was physical, as Burroughs sophomore defender Gabby Morales, also a captain, left with about 15 left after a head collision.

Searl added a 20-yarder in the sixth minute and Skinner saw a 25-yarder in the seventh minute slip wide right.

Castanon missed from 20 yards in the ninth minute and Bailey answered with a 25-yarder in the 12th minute.

Burroughs freshman defender Samantha Valencia had a 35-yard free kick in the 14th minute and Bailey’s 30-yarder sailed too high in the 14th minute.

Searl’s long pass was nabbed by Skinner, who then unloaded a 10-yarder in the 15th minute.

Senior midfielder Magali Olide had a 35-yarder in the 16th minute, Olide tacked on a 24-yard free kick in the 20th minute, before Bailey’s 25-yarder in the 24th minute drifted wide left.

At this point, the Indians dominated the action as Bailey’s 25-yarder in the 30th minute went slightly left of the goal while Burroughs junior forward Megan Knutson’s 15-yarder also scooted wide left.

Valencia’s 47-yard free kick in the 37th minute came up short while Riggs’ 10-yarder missed in the 39th minute and Knutson’s 10-yard header also failed to locate the target in extra time.

Skinner had a 15-yarder hit the goal post in the 43rd minute and Valencia added a 40-yarder in the 51st minute.

In the 59th minute, junior midfielder Olivia Cashman had a 35-yard free kick for the Indians and then found the ball and blasted a 20-yarder.

Castanon had a 25-yarder in the 60th minute, teammate and sophomore defender Anna Melendrez tacked on a 35-yarder in the 63rd minute and Bailey’s 25-yard penalty kick in the 72nd minute drifted too high.

Burroughs Girls Soccer Posts 4-1 Victory Over Artesia In CIF Opening Round

By Rick Assad

 

A junior, a sophomore and two freshmen accounted for all of the goals for the Burroughs High girls’ soccer team on Wednesday night at chilly and windy Memorial Field.

In short, the Indians were simply too fast, too good, too deep and too talented for Artesia in their CIF Southern Section Division IV first-round playoff match, winning 4-1.

Olivia Cashman scored in the opening half for the Indians, who beat Artesia 4-1 in a CIF first-round match. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“When we have the ball a lot, they’re either going to do one of two things,” Burroughs coach Brady Riggs said of the defensive set-up. “They’re either going to press us. Try to a play a high line like Burbank did or they’re going to park the bus. Well this team parked the bus. For the first 20 minutes, I think they had maybe one player at the 30-yard line.”

The Indians (16-3-2) will host Hemet (20-2-5), which held off visiting Estancia 2-1 in an opening-round contest, on Friday with a likely 5 p.m. start time.

“We got a lot of shots. They were frustrated they didn’t get more goals in the first half,” said Riggs of his team. “We had a 2-0 lead and the next goal really matters.”

Freshman defender Samantha Valencia started off the scoring with a 32-yard free kick in the sixth minute for a 1-0 lead.

Freshman Megan Schmidt also contributed a tally for Burroughs against the Pioneers. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“I looked over and he [Coach Riggs] signaled to take a shot and I was like, okay,” Valencia said of her early tally. “I’ve done that in practice before. I normally don’t hit it from that far in a game and shoot it.  I was like, wow, that’s pretty good.”

In the 28th minute, junior midfielder Olivia Cashman’s 15-yarder extended the Indians’ advantage to 2-0.

“I had a lot of pressure and I was trying to blast it, but I didn’t get much of a foot on it, but it went in,” said Cashman of her goal.

Cashman knows that the defense is critical, especially in the postseason. “We have such a strong defense. Especially when we played Arcadia and CV during league, we had to make sure we had a strong defense,” she said.

The Indians placed first in the Pacific League, something they haven’t done since 1993 when they were in the Foothill League.

Lauryn Bailey’s goal gave Burroughs a 4-0 lead. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The lead ballooned to 3-0 in the 51st minute when freshman forward Megan Schmidt made a nice juke move 15 yards from the goal which brought out sophomore goalie Jizelle Velasquez.

Schmidt then tapped in a five-yarder for a 3-0 edge.

In the 55th minute, senior midfielder Abbie Riggs slammed a 45-yard free kick into the box which sophomore forward Lauryn Bailey retrieved, found room to navigate around players and then crushed a 20-yarder into the back of the net for a 4-0 cushion.

The Pioneers (12-6-5) avoided the shutout when senior Michelle Abarca knocked in a 15-yarder in the 57th minute past freshman goalie Kaylin Casper, who was otherwise perfect.

Valencia’s 35-yard kick sailed wide right in the third minute, sophomore defender Jessie Virtue had a 15-yarder in the 11th minute for the Indians, and Valencia tacked on a 25-yarder in the 17th minute.

Junior Abigail Sanchez delivered a 30-yarder in the 19th minute for Artesia, followed by Bailey’s 20-yarder in the 22nd minute.

Lauryn Bailey uses fancy footwork to keep the ball away from the Pioneers. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

Sophomore midfielder Lily Gonzalez, who turned her right ankle in the opening half which required an ice pack, had a 15-yarder in the 30th minute that hit the left goal post.

Riggs then added a 46-yard free kick in the 32nd minute.

As of Wednesday night, it’s not certain whether Gonzalez will be able to play against Hemet on Friday.

Sophomore Stephanie Flores had a 35-yard free kick in the 35th minute for the Pioneers and teammate senior Celeste Rodriguez tossed in a 20-yard header in the 36th minute.

Bailey’s 20-yard attempt was scooped up by Velasquez in the 38th minute. Cashman had a 35-yarder in the 39th minute while Bailey’s 25-yarder caromed off the cross bar in extra time.

Abarca contributed a 35-yarder in the 42nd minute, Burroughs junior forward Trinity Vournas countered with a 25-yarder in the 46th minute and Rodriguez answered from 30 yards in the 60th minute.

Bailey had back-to-back attempts and included a 15-yarder in the 61st minute and a 25-yarder in the 64th minute that soared too high.

Cashman’s 35-yarder in the 65th minute was off target, Flores added a 25-yarder in the 72nd minute that drifted wide left for the Pioneers and teammate, junior Kimberly Flores had a 25-yarder in the 75th minute.

Burroughs Girls Soccer Inches Closer To Pacific League Title

By Rick Assad

 

It’s not official just yet, but the Burroughs High girls’ soccer team, which held on for a 2-1 victory over longtime powerhouse Arcadia at Memorial Field on Tuesday afternoon, is one game away from winning its first league title in more than a quarter century.

The last time the Indians (14-3-2 and 11-1-1 in league) won a league banner was during the 1992-1993 season when they were members of the Foothill League.

Lauryn Bailey’s first-half goal evened it at 1-1 in a Pacific League match against Arcadia. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

On Thursday, with a victory over city rival Burbank, the Indians could capture at least a share of the Pacific League title.

Burroughs could win the league crown outright if Crescenta Valley (14-4-3 and 11-1-1 in league) losses or ties against Arcadia (10-8-2 and 9-3-1 in league).

“They are easily the best team in this league since I’ve been coaching here in 2013,” Burroughs coach Brady Riggs said of the Apaches, who have claimed the last seven league championships. “To beat them with everything on the line is absolutely cool. Especially coming from behind. But that’s this group. I knew they wouldn’t quit. They’re amazing.”

A goal in each half by Burroughs against the powerful Apaches set up a celebration afterward.

In the 29th minute, and on 25-yard blast off the right foot of Lauryn Bailey, the match was even at 1-1.

“We knew it wasn’t over yet. We always come back after they [the opponent] score,” said Bailey, a sophomore forward.”

Sophomore defender Jessie Virtue moves the ball up the field for the Indians, who defeated the Apaches 2-1. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

The clincher was kicked into the net from 15 yards in the 65th minute and came from sophomore midfielder Lily Gonzalez, who was given a yellow card in the 61st minute.

“When I came off I was very frustrated with myself, the way I was playing, but I knew that my performance shouldn’t go against my teammates, so I knew that when I go back in, I had to play twice as hard,” Gonzalez said.

The Apaches bounded ahead 1-0 when junior forward Bertha Guzman drilled a 15-yarder from the right side in the 12th minute that eluded freshman goalie Kaylin Casper.

“It was my fault at the beginning of the game,” Riggs said of the early one-goal deficit. “I was a little too conservative with how we set up. We gave up the goal. I overcoached in the beginning of the game. They saved me today.”

After falling behind, the Indians seemed to become more laser-focused. “They got to play the way they want to play,” Riggs said. “That’s aggressive and attacking and free-flowing. They want to try and score goals.”

Samantha Valencia (#16) and Abbie Riggs (#10) battle for the ball. (Photo by Ross A. Benson).

Emily McHorney was an important cog in the victory.

“She played the best game of her career and it’s been a damn good career,” Riggs said of the senior defender, who along with junior Ava Kramer are defensive stalwarts.

After Arcadia’s lead, the Indians dominated the action until Guzman unloaded a shot in the 27th minute.

Bailey had a kick in the 13th minute and one in the 14th minute that sailed too high over the net.

Gonzalez’s kick in the 15th minute drifted wide right and a 10-yard attempt in the 17th minute by junior forward Trinity Vournas was blocked, while junior midfielder Olivia Cashman added a kick in the 19th minute from 20 yards.

Senior midfielder Abbie Riggs contributed a 33-yard free kick in the 21st minute for the Indians.

Senior defender Emily McHorney played superbly for the Indians. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“It’s not tough to play a game like this,” said Riggs, who was coughing and wheezing and clearly under the weather. “It’s fun.”

Riggs knows the importance of defense.

“Before the game we say defense like hell. We know we have a good offense,” she noted. “We knew at some point we’re going to put it in the back of the net. We have to worry about us losing it.”

The younger Riggs went on: “We handled our defense today,” she pointed out. “Everybody stepped up. We won all the balls in the middle.”

Two kicks by Bailey followed and included a 35-yarder in the 33rd minute and a 25-yarder in extra time.

Junior defender Teresa Gardner had a 35-yarder in the 41st minute for the Apaches.

Freshman Samantha Valencia delivered a 35-yard kick in the 46th minute that was scooped up by Arcadia senior goalie Katherine Guerra.

Vournas had a close-range header in the 48th minute and Gonzalez’s 20-yarder sailed wide left in the 49th minute.

Valencia had a free kick in the  51st minute and a corner kick by Riggs and Bailey’s follow-up kick in the 54th minute missed the mark.

Gardner’s free kick in the 56th minute was too high and Cashman’s attempt in the 59th minute drifted wide right.

Freshman midfielder Avery Bogue’s 30-yarder in the 60th minute was off target for the Apaches.

Burroughs freshman forward Megan Schmidt delivered three straight kicks and they included a 35-yarder in the 61st minute, an attempt in the 62nd minute and a 20-yarder in the 63rd minute.

Cashman contributed a 20-yarder in the 63rd minute and Riggs tacked on a kick in the 64th minute.

Burroughs Girls Soccer Edges Visiting Crescenta Valley 1-0

By Rick Assad

 

With much sitting on the proverbial table, Tuesday afternoon’s Pacific League girls’ soccer showdown between Burroughs High and Crescenta Valley, there was a sense the anticipated matchup was going to be extremely close and also physical.

On both counts, it was and what occurred in the second meeting at Memorial Field between these perennial powerhouses was that one goal was scored and it came in the second minute by sophomore forward Lauryn Bailey, who knocked home a 15-yarder on key passes from senior midfielder Abbie Riggs and sophomore midfielder Lily Gonzalez.

Lauryn Bailey, shown in a match versus Louisville, had the only tally in a 1-0 win over Crescenta Valley. (Photo by Ross A Benson)

“I knew we had to come in hard,” Bailey said of the matchup. “We all had to work our hardest. We’ve got to keep going. They go hard, we go hard.”

The first time these two faced off it was deadlocked at 2-2 on Dec. 11 and with a 1-0 win by the Indians, both are tied for the top spot in the league.

But if the Indians are able to claim the league banner, it will be the first time in 26 years.

“I think the players always adjust,” Burroughs coach Brady Riggs said of the rough and physical play at times. “So if the ref is calling it tight, then they play that way according to the referee. If the ref’s letting it go, then it’s gotta be played the same way. We’d rather be in a game that’s about skill as much as possible. But we’re ready for anything. This team’s ready to go. Whether it’s skillful or physical. They’re ready to go for 80 minutes.”

The Indians are 12-3-2 overall and 9-1-1 in league, while the Falcons are 12-4-3 and 9-1-1 in league.

“In my honest opinion, they’re not that good,” the younger Riggs said of the Falcons. “They don’t play the beautiful game and that’s what soccer is. They don’t set it up. We went into this game knowing this is what matters the most.”

In the seventh minute, Crescenta Valley sophomore Chloe Ataya had a 20-yarder. In the 10th minute, Gonzalez had a 25-yarder and in the 12th minute, Gonzalez added a 20-yarder.

Junior midfielder Olivia Cashman, pictured in a recent match, played well against the Falcons. (Photo by Ross A Benson)

The Falcons had the next three kicks and they included a 20-yarder from sophomore Julianna Cheney in the 25th minute, Ataya’s 20-yarder in the 30th minute and Ataya’s 15-yarder in the 34th minute.

Gonzalez had a 20-yarder in the 36th minute, Cheney had a pair of 20-yarders in the 37th minute and 39th minute, while the Falcons’ sophomore Dana Ryan added a 20-yarder in the 39th minute.

The Indians had the first three kicks to begin the second half as Gonzalez delivered a 20-yarder in the 41st minute and Gonzalez added one from 25 yards in the 44th minute, while Burroughs freshman defender Samantha Valencia had a 30-yarder in the 47th minute.

Cheney’s kick was stuffed in the 50th minute, Crescenta Valley junior Kathryn Thamasian’s 25-yard free kick in the 55th minute was off, Thamasian’s 32-yard free kick was blocked in the 57th minute and Ryan’s 30-yarder drifted wide right in the 58th minute.

Gonzalez’s 25-yarder slid wide left in the 62nd minute, Ryan’s 10-yard header missed in the 69th minute and sophomore defender Gabby Morales had a 25-yarder in the 72nd minute for the Indians.

In the 73rd minute, sophomore Ashlin Cuesta’s 20-yarder failed for the Falcons and Bailey had a 25-yard header in extra time.

Freshman goalie Kaylin Casper was stellar in the net for the Indians, who will face Pasadena on Friday, Arcadia on Jan. 29 and Burbank on Jan. 31.

 

Burbank Girls Soccer Shuts Out Host Hoover 2-0

By Rick Assad

 

Two teams desperate for a win met on Friday afternoon in a Pacific League girls’ soccer match.

Burbank High and host Hoover needed a victory in the worst way, but it was the Bulldogs who came away with the triumph, a 2-0 decision on two opening-half goals.

In the 11th minute and from 20 yards away, sophomore forward Erin Trainor made it 1-0.

Madie Chase, shown in a recent nonleague game against Kennedy, had a goal in a 2-0 win over Hoover. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

“I really think we’re going to pull through and I think we’re doing really good,” Trainor said of her team. “I definitely think our connection with this season’s team is going really well.”

Trainor also addressed her goal. “I usually play center back, so that was definitely different for me,” she said. “I saw the opportunity of a run-in. So I took it. I didn’t even get a really good touch on it. I poked it and it went in.”

The Bulldogs (2-5 and 2-3 in league) stretched their advantage to 2-0 on a 20-yard tally in the 32nd minute by freshman forward Madie Chase.

“We did get better today from the last game,” Burbank coach Pablo Diaz said. “I think this game was tougher in league than the last one. It’s good to get the lead earlier. That’s always good to keep the confidence up.”

The Tornadoes, who began the season 4-1, but have struggled mightily since, had a tough time getting off clean shots on goal.

It’s not that Hoover didn’t get off some attempts, it did, but many were simply not high percentage shots.

Burbank, which had a 2-0 triumph over Muir, had a kick in the fifth minute. Hoover (6-9 and 0-5 in league) then countered, but sophomore forward Madeline Coopersmith lost her footing and slipped on a 35-yarder in the eighth minute.

Burbank senior right wing Isabel Silva, pictured in a recent match, didn’t score, but played well against the Tornadoes. (Photo by Ross A Benson)

Chase’s 40-yarder fell short in the 10th minute and in the 11th minute, Chase added a 25-yarder that drifted left of the goal.

In the 13th minute Chase had a solid chance at a goal from straight on and 20 yards out, but her kick missed the net and bounced back to Trainor, who then blasted a quick rebound shot.

In the 18th minute Trainor’s 25-yarder failed to locate the net and in the 19th minute sophomore center defender Brianna Romero unloaded a 35-yarder for the Bulldogs.

Chase’s 35-yarder in the 19th minute missed after sailing wide left. In the 21st minute Burbank freshman center middle Alyssa Mendoza’s 10-yarder was saved by Hoover sophomore goalie Chloe Britton-Naime.

Hoover sophomore defender Brianna Serna’s 53-yard free kick in the 23rd minute missed and a 50-yard free kick from Burbank senior center defender Isabel Partida in the 24th minute was also off.

Mendoza’s 10-yarder was scooped up by Britton-Naime in the 25th minute and a 25-yarder by Burbank junior right wing Sydney Sugars was unsuccessful.

Chase’s 15-yarder sailed high over the net in the 39th minute to close out the opening half which Burbank dominated.

Coopersmith then delivered a 15-yarder in the 43rd minute and Hoover tacked on a kick in the 53rd minute.

“If I’m being honest, today we didn’t play our best game,” Hoover coach Luis Ardiano said. “I have a lot of confidence in our team. Sometimes there are so many lows against you, but that’s an indication that something great is going to happen. That’s a process for them and for me.”

Trainor’s 35-yard free kick in the 69th minute missed the target and freshman Elli Sumera’s 25-yard tapper in the 60th minute also didn’t settle into the goal.

Coopersmith’s 35-yarder veered left in the 68th minute and Hoover sophomore forward Jazzmin Simmons’ 25-yarder in the 73rd minute also missed the target.

Partida’s 15-yarder in the 75th minute failed to find the net and a corner kick by Sugars also failed to produce.

Coopersmith then tacked on a 25-yarder in the 79th minute and in the 80th minute, Simmons had a 35-yarder scoot left.

Burbank senior goalie and co-captain Ashley Im had an outstanding afternoon against the Tornadoes after keeping them out of the net.

Burroughs Girls Soccer Battle To 2-2 Tie With Crescenta Valley

By Rick Assad

 

Burroughs High’s Abbie Riggs is an extremely well-rounded soccer player with a multitude of talents.

One could argue that Riggs’ best asset is her ability to put the ball into the back of the net on free kicks.

On Tuesday at Crescenta Valley, the senior midfielder blasted a 21-yarder in the 79th minute that deflected off a Falcon player as the Indians rallied for a 2-2 tie in a Pacific League match.

“It’s my last game here in high school. I was so nervous,” Riggs of the game-tying tally. “This is really our first hard game. I just hit it as hard as I could. Burroughs is always a second half team.”

Lauryn Bailey, shown in a recent match against Louisville, had an assist in a 2-2 tie with Crescenta Valley. (Photo by Ross A Benson)

In the 76th minutes, Riggs let loose with a 20-yard free kick that didn’t find the back of the net.

It was tied 1-1 at the intermission when Burroughs sophomore forward Lauryn Bailey spotted junior forward Trinity Vournas, who then kicked the ball into the net in the 10th minute.

“It’s hard to do that on the road,” Burroughs coach Brady Riggs said of rallying against the Falcons. “We changed tactics midway through the first half. Even at the end, were trying to go full speed to win it.”

Riggs went on: “I think we did ramp it up in the second half,” he noted. “I can tell them what to do, but it’s up to them.”

The Falcons (3-1-3 and 2-0-1 in league) darted in front 2-1 on a goal from sophomore Julianna Cheney in the 63rd minute on a beautiful juke move.

The Falcons jumped out to a 1-0 advantage in the fifth minute when junior Kathryn Thamasian knocked home a penalty kick from 20 yards after a hand ball infraction.

Olivia Cashman plays midfield for the Indians. Cashman’s play helped Burroughs achieve a 2-2 tie with the Falcons. (Photo by Ross A. Benson)

In the second minute, Riggs had a kick stuffed and in the sixth minute Bailey’s 20-yarder failed to find the mark.

Burroughs freshman defender Samantha Valencia’s 35-yarder in the eighth minute was off the mark.

In the ninth minute, Riggs’ 35-yarder sailed wide left.

Valencia’s dribbler from 25 yards in the 19th minute didn’t find the goal.

Crescenta Valley freshman Rachel Park had a 20-yarder in the 25th minute.

Thamasian would have scored in the 28th minute, but sophomore Dana Ryan was offside.

Junior midfielder Olivia Cashman unloaded a 25-yarder in the 34th minute for the Indians (2-2-2 and 2-0-1 in league).

Sophomore midfielder Lily Gonzalez walloped a 20-yareder in the 48th minute for Burroughs and Gonzalez added a 20-yarder in the 49th minute.

In the 44th minute, Cashman had a 20-yarder while Falcon sophomore Chloe Ayala almost scored on a 10-yarder in the 61st minute.

Ryan delivered a 15-yarder in the 65th minute and Gonzalez unleashed a 15-yarder in the 73th minute.