Burroughs sweeps Burbank in regular-season finale doubleheader to clinch playoff spots


The John Burroughs Bears basketball teams swept the Burbank Bulldogs in the regular season finale doubleheader to win the season series and punch their tickets to the CIF Southern Section Playoffs. Before each game, there was a senior night celebration for the Bears with Nikela Damasen and Ameria Shagiorvia being honored with their families before the start of the girl’s game along with Beckett Sandass and Sean Carter sharing the moment with their loved ones before tip-off of the boys game. Mariam Fahs led the Lady Bears with 19 points and Landon Everheart recorded 21 for the boys’ team. Mary Mkrtchyan led the Lady Bulldogs with 6 points while OJ Blankson led Burbank with 27 points in the losses.

The girl’s game was up first to get the night underway. Entering the contest, the John Burroughs Lady Bears had already claimed possession of second place in the Pacific League with a dominant 74-53 win over Muir last Tuesday night along with a spot in the CIF Southern Section Playoffs, while Burbank blew out Hoover 69-23 on the same evening.

The Lady Bears started the night by going on a 22-0 scoring run in the 1st quarter with Fahs, Ashley Martin, Elizabeth Amaroso, and Jessica Mena guiding Burroughs to keep the Lady Bulldogs scoreless in the 1st quarter.

Burbank finally got on the board when Arevita Keshishyan recorded both of her foul shots. Burroughs continued to pull away in the 2nd quarter and led 28-7 at the halftime break. The Bears strong 2nd half helped them hold the Bulldogs to 14 points.

“We came out and showed a lot of energy and look forward to seeing what we can do in the playoffs,” said Lady Bears coach Vikki Ognayan. Ognayan mentioned that Ashley Martin and Mia Paz both played well in their final Pacific League game and admitted that she wanted to get them on the floor together since it was the last time they played against Burbank on their home floor.

The Lady Bears finish the regular season with a 23-5 overall and 12-2 in Pacific League play while the Lady Bulldogs finish with a losing record of 7-19 overall and 4-9 in Pacific League play. Burbank’s season has concluded, and Burroughs will host Paloma Valley in round 1 of the CIF Southern Section Division 2A playoffs on Thursday, February 8th at 6 p.m.

The boy’s game concluded the night with the final game of the doubleheader. Burroughs came off a disappointing 73-64 loss to Muir while Burbank had an upset 66-64 victory over Hoover with OJ Blankson nailing down the buzzer beating 2 point shot to win the game for the Bulldogs last Tuesday evening. The Bears had a golden opportunity to clinch a spot in the CIF Southern Section Playoffs with a win or a Glendale loss to Hoover before tipoff. The 1st quarter lived up to the hype with both teams trading points back and forth while the Bears ended the 1st quarter with a one-point lead. Burroughs scored on their own with Chase Kardosh and Landon Everheart leading the charge to help them lead 40-23 at the end of the 1st half.

Burbank attempted to rally in the 3rd quarter while Burroughs was hungry to put the game away in both the 3rd and 4th quarters. With 5:40 left in the 4th quarter, Arthur Ambaryan got ejected from the game by having 2 technical fouls in the contest. Everheart’s two layups towards the end of the 4th quarter helped Burroughs clinch a spot in the CIF Southern Section playoffs.

“It was a tough win. Burbank is well-coached, and our players did a wonderful job when facing a win-or-go-home situation,” said Bears interim coach Malique Johnson. Johnson admitted that Landon Everheart showed up in a must-win game for Burroughs which was great for him.

Burroughs finishes the regular season with a 15-13 overall record and a 5-8 record in Pacific League play to clinch 4th place in League over the Glendale Nitros and a spot in the CIF Southern Section playoffs. They will go on the road to take on Costa Meza on Wednesday, February 7th in round 1 of the CIF Southern Section Division 4AA playoffs at 7 p.m. Burbank’s season has come to a close and the Bulldogs have finished the 2023-2024 season in 8th place in the league, with a record of 6-22 overall, and a 2-12 record in Pacific League Play.