ARCADIA — Despite trailing host Arcadia through the final three quarters Friday, the Burbank High girls' basketball team shill held out hope that it could win the Pacific League contest.
The Bulldogs were able to whittle what was a 15-point deficit with just over three minutes remaining in the game down to a seemingly manageable eight points just under the two-minute mark. At that point, it appeared the Bulldogs had momentum in their side.
But Burbank missed some easy shots late, sealing its fate. As a result, the Apaches were able to weather the comeback attempt and defeat visiting Burbank, 50-40.
"We did miss some easy shots around the basket late in the game," said Burbank Coach Bruce Breeden, whose team slipped to 9-6, 1-1 in league. "I thought that we had a chance late, but we just didn't finish with our shots."
With the help of 18 turnovers, the Bulldogs found themselves trailing Arcadia, 48-33, with 3:15 remaining in the final fame following a bucket from the Apaches' Kimberly Kodama. But sparked by transfer Yassemeen Sa'Dullah, who tallied seven of her team-high 13 points in the final stanza, Burbank stayed in the game.
When Sa'Dullah sank another basket with 1:55 left on the clock, the lead was only eight, 48-40. However, on its next three possessions, Burbank missed a layup with 1:15 left, missed a close jumper in the paint with 48 seconds remaining and a free throw with 38 seconds left.
"I'm most proud of the way we played in that fourth quarter, especially in those final four minutes," Breeden said. "They came back and they battled and that's what I like to see. But you can't just play well in the final minutes, you have to play the whole 32 minutes.
"I just thought we played out of control at times and that's what hurt us. I think that helped to contribute to our turnovers."
The Bulldogs did a good job at holding Arcadia's highest scorer, Ciara Benton, to 13 points. However, they couldn't contain the junior on the boards, as Benton tallied 19 rebounds.
Burbank had only five players score on the night, with Ratina Karapet tallying nine.
The game was a low-scoring affair through the first quarter, as Arcadia (11-2, 2-0) held a 10-8 lead after one. The Apaches were just five of 17 from the floor in the opening stanza.
Arcadia started shooting better to start the second quarter, as it converted its first five of eight field-goal attempts. That helped the Apaches increase their lead to 12, 22-10. However, Burbank embarked on an 11-3 run at the end of the second and went into the half down just 25-21.
The third quarter saw Arcadia increase its lead and the Apaches went into the fourth with a 38-29 cushion.
"Giving up 50 points is just too much, especially when we're struggling to score points ourselves," Breeden said. "We have to get better on the defensive end."
The Bulldogs were playing without senior and all-league player Ashley Linda, who broke her foot and is expected to be out another month. They also will not have the services of 6-foot-6 junior Anastacia Tsybava for the season after she was ruled ineligible by the CIF Southern Section office. Tsybava played at Burbank as a freshman and transferred to Bellarmine-Jefferson last season before coming back to Burbank.