Burroughs wins the season series with Burbank with another 3-0 win


JBHS Boys Volleyball Team Photo following the 3-0 victory over Burbank Photo Courtesy: John Burroughs High School Boys Varsity Volleyball

The John Burroughs Bears won the season series over the Burbank Bulldogs with another sweeping victory behind Benji Ly’s 11-kill performance and Charlie Gerard’s 8-kill and 7-dig performance. The last time the teams met was back on Thursday, March 7th, when Burroughs came out victorious with a 3-0 win over Burbank. Before the second contest of the Burbank crosstown rival series, Burbank was coming off a 3-0 loss to Crescenta Valley on Wednesday, April 3rd, while Burroughs beat South Pasadena in 4 sets (32-30, 25-21, 26-28, 25-14) on Tuesday, April 2nd.

Both teams started the opening set with quick points with both the Bulldogs and Bears trading points via side outs and tapping violations until Charlie Gerard recorded the set’s first kill to even the score at 2. Burbank and Burroughs continued to trade off points including a Benji Ly kill to give Burroughs a 2-point lead. Nathan Kameya scored an ace to give the Bears a 3-point lead before Burbank came back within two on a side-out error by Burroughs. The set continued in a back-and-forth manner, as the Bulldogs stayed within striking distance, never trailing by more than three, but they were unable to get closer than that. Ly secured the opening set’s match point to propel the Bears to a 25-22 win in set 1.

Charlie Gerard got the scoring going for the Bears with an ace to start the second set. Following Gavin Arnold’s hitting error and Ryan Viyar’s push, both teams traded points early in the set with kills by Ha and Ly, Gerard and Ryder Tafoya both recorded blocks to tie the score at 5 until Burroughs made a side-out error to give Burbank a 1 point lead. Arnold and Henry Carlin both had a block in the set to set up the set point, which came in the form of a net error on Burbank with Burroughs taking set 2 by the final of 25-15.

The third set began with three consecutive illegal touches by the Bulldogs for a 3-0 Burroughs lead before they recorded a side-out error to get Burbank. Sam Jurman had 3 kills for Burbank in the set as the Bulldogs refused to go down without a fight. They were again able to trade points with the Bears, but Burroughs never let the lead drop below two points. Benji Ly ended the game with a kill to give Burroughs a 25-23 set win over Burbank to complete the sweep.

“We are not playing at the level that we want to play at, even though a win is a win against Burbank, we have bigger goals to focus on and have to execute our play better,” said Bears coach Joel Brinton. Brinton stated that there was a lack of execution in the game but there were bright spots for the Bears in the win against the Bulldogs.

“After last night’s loss to CV, it was a little rough but I told the guys after the game that this was the best side-out execution that we had as a team overall this was the best game of the season that we had as a team,” said Bulldogs coach Brandon Villaflor. Villaflor called Sam Jurman Ryan Viar and Tayio Nakiao talented players and could put the ball away anywhere on the floor.

Burroughs improves their record to 11-5 overall and 5-1 in the Pacific League as they move ahead of Arcadia to secure sole possession of 1st place in the standings, while Burbank drops to 3-11 overall and 1-6 in Pacific League play. Burroughs will take on Arcadia in a marquee Pacific League showdown on Tuesday, April 9th with the first-serve scheduled for 3:45 p.m. Burbank will host Glendale on the same day at 5:15 p.m. with senior night pregame ceremonies honoring the class of 2024 before the first serve.