Tag Archives: Mher Matevosyan

A Look Back at the Best Teams of 2019

With a lot of talent in many sports at both Burbank and Burroughs highs, being a top 10 team out of the many there are in the city does not come without a tremendous amount of hard work and success. We take back a look at what we feel were the 10 best teams between the two schools during the 2019 calendar year. This includes winter and spring sports teams during the 2018-2019 school year as well as fall sports teams from the 2019-2020 school year.

No. 1 Burbank boys cross country

The Bulldogs may have not won a Pacific League title, but they are still deserving of the top honor. In the season finale, the California State Meet in Fresno, Burbank topped league champion Crescenta Valley, which had finished second in the CIF Southern Section Division 1 just a week earlier.
Burbank finished fifth in the Southern Section Division 1 championship and were the 10th best team in California (all divisions combined) in Fresno. Senior Victor Goli led the Bulldogs in rebounding from an injury plagued junior year. Fellow seniors Dayne Ellis, Anthony Chiaravalle, Steven Wright and Tadeh Shanazari will certainly have plenty of great memories to last a lifetime. Juniors Andres Leon and Tyler Jenkins will return next season in hopes of leading the next group of great Burbank runners.

(Photo by Ross A Benson)

No. 2 Burroughs boys volleyball

If any program in the city deserves the program of the decade award, it is clearly the Indians’ boys volleyball program. Burroughs has won 10 consecutive league titles under Coach Joel Brinton. Although the Indians’ record at 20-13 may not look overly impressive, Burroughs schedules a number of elite teams in nonleague matches and also plays in several top tournaments. The Indians were also relatively young last season. Kade McGovern had an outstanding sophomore season and has the potential to be as good as any player that has ever played for the Indians. Outside hitter Connor Burroughs is another top returner for 2020.

Niko Coccio

No. 3 Burroughs boys golf

The Indians finished second in the Pacific League, but made things very interesting because they gave traditional power Arcadia all it could handle. Burroughs even defeated Arcadia by 20 strokes in one league match at DeBell Golf Course. The good thing for Burroughs is that much of the team returns in 2020. Lincoln Melcher, who has committed to UCLA, was outstanding as a freshman and along with Kodiak Hernandez give the Indians a great 1-2 punch for two more seasons. Niko Coccio, Daniel Gonzalez and Ryan McGowan are expected back in 2020.

No. 4 Burroughs girls soccer

The Indians won their first league title since 1993 and finished the season 16-4-2. Senior Abbie Riggs as well as sophomores Lauryn Bailey and Lily Gonzalez played a key role in giving Burroughs the historic title. Burroughs lost in the second round of the CIF Southern Section Division 4 playoffs to Hemet.

No. 5 Burroughs boys soccer

A young Burroughs squad won the Pacific League title and the 11th time under longtime coach Mike Kodama. The Indians advanced to the second round of the CIF Southern Section Division 3 playoffs, finishing the season with a 15-6-3 record. Sophomore Manny Gonzalez earned All-CIF honors as he scored 18 goals.

No. 6 Burroughs girls volleyball

The Indians went 18-6 overall and captured the Pacific League crown under veteran coach Edwin Real. Unfortunately, a tough playoff draw saw the Indians end their season in the first round of the playoffs against a very talented Murrieta Valley team, which entered the match with a 23-8 record.

Senior Lydie Grote led the way and signed a letter of intent with the University of California, Berkeley.

 

No. 7 Burbank girls cross country

Like the Burbank boys’ team, the Burbank girls’ cross country team finished second in the Pacific League behind Crescenta Valley. Also like the boys’ team, Burbank defeated the Falcons in their final head-to-head race, the CIF Southern Section Division 1 finals. Perhaps the greatest thing that happened to the team was the fact that star runner Mckynzee Kelley was able to survive a terrible car accident and actually return to the team. With a strong group of runners led by Kelley, Megan LaCamera, Elin Markarian, Zoe Zeron and Noela Kim, Burbank should be ready for another fine year in 2020.

Kiara Hernandez of Burbank High

No. 8 Burbank girls golf

The Bulldogs gave traditional power Arcadia a run for its money in the Pacific League title chase, only to come up just six strokes short at Brookside Golf Course. Burbank was led most of the season by freshman Lisette Orellana. The Bulldogs finished 11th in the tough Eastern Division in CIF competition and won the Optimist Tournament. In dual meet competition, Burbank posted a 28-7 season record. Sophomore star Kiara Hernandez joined the team late in the season after transferring from Burroughs. With her returning for the next two seasons, there is lots of reason for Burbank to be optimistic about the future.

No. 9 Burbank boys track and field

The Bulldogs came just one event away from winning the Pacific League dual meet title. Burbank had a solid group across the board and many return for 2020. Sprinters Bryan David and Jack Sapyta, middle distance runner Mher Matesvoyan and distance runners Victor Goli and Andres Leon led the way.

No. 10 Burroughs boys water polo

The Indians didn’t have a great regular season, finishing fourth in the Pacific League. But Burroughs earned itself onto this list because of its postseason play. Burroughs earned two CIF Southern Section playoff victories and nearly pulled off an upset of second seeded St. Francis in the quarterfinals, losing 9-8. Vahagan Sahakyan was one of the Indians’ key players.

 

 

 

 

 

Burbank Cross Country Ready for Big Year

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

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

Burbank

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Sol Fernandez

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

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

Burroughs

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

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

Jordan Guzman of Burroughs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Burbank Girls Cross Country Wins League Title Outright

The last time the Burbank High girls’ cross country team won a league title outright, the year was 1978.
Despite the fine achievement, the Lady Bulldogs didn’t grab all the headlines as those went to Jeff Nelson, arguably the greatest high school boys’ cross country of all time.
Now four decades later, Nelson’s wife Kathryn, led the Bulldogs to their historic title, which was clinched Thursday in the Pacific League Finals at Crescenta Valley Park.
“I stood their crying for a second,” Kathryn Nelson said of the achievement. “(It was) a lot of hard work. They wanted it. We knew we could be competitive, but you have to show up in the race.”
The Bulldogs easily won by scoring 32 points. Burroughs finished second with 59 points. Both teams will advance to postseason competition. Burbank tied for a Pacific League title in 2014, but the Bulldogs never won a league meet in doing so.

Junior Sol Fernandez led the Bulldogs by clearning the 3-mile course in 19 minutes, 12 seconds.
“Our coaches told us it is not for you to grab, you are defending it,” Fernandez said. “It is a huge success for this team.”
Shalom Mejia finished third in 19:36.
Also for Burbank were Jamie Levin (seventh, 19:54), Megan LaCamera (ninth, 20:02), Mckynzee Kelley (11th, 20:06), Lydia Forsyth (13th, 20:11) and Natalie Danao (16th, 20:21).

Burroughs was led by sophomore Jordan Guzman, who finished sixth in 19:53.
Also for the Indians were Ceci Whitney (eighth, 19;58), Sophia Navarro (10th, 20:05), Lakely Nealis (15th, 20:14), Julianna Navarro (20th, 20:37), Jamie Perez-Fernandez (26th, 21:19) and Kiara Cruz(27th, 21:46).
Burbank finished third in the boys’ varsity competition with 85 points. Crescenta Valley won with 27 points. Burroughs, without injured star Raymond Berrellez, finished fifth with 110 points.
The Bulldogs were led by sophomore Andres Leon (eighth, 16:12). He was followed by Victor Goli (12th, 16:23), Tadeh Shanazari (15th, 16:37), Steven Wright (24th, 17:23), Dayne Ellis (26th, 17:29), Tyler Jenkins (32nd, 17:51) and Mher Matevosyan (36th, 18:07). All seven of Burbank’s runners are underclassmen.


Burroughs was led by the duo of Robert McGraham and Carlos Ponce. McGraham finished 18th in 16:52. Ponce was 19th, also in 16:52. Trevor Villagran was 20th in 16:55. Jimmy Nealis was 23rd (17:12), Johnny Padungyothee (30th, 17:38), Peter Lainson (33rd 18:00) and Logan Berger (39th, 18:30).