BURBANK — Perhaps a year from now, the Burbank High boys' volleyball team will take a game from Burroughs, the Bulldogs' cross-town and Pacific League rival.
In their six league meetings since 2012, the year that the Bulldogs restarted their boys' volleyball program, Burroughs has won all nine games, including three in a convincing fashion in Friday's match at Burbank High.
The Indians, winners of four straight league titles, needed just 61 minutes to defeat Burbank, 25-14, 25-16, 25-13, remaining undefeated in league and needing one more win to clinch a share of another league crown.
"They are clearly at a higher level than we are and a faster level," said Burbank Coach Patrick McMenamin, whose team has beat every other league opponent but dropped both of its matches to Burroughs, leaving its record at 15-3, 8-2 in league. "We're going to have to diversify our offense more, serve tougher and play up in games like this. They did and we obviously didn't."
With a raucous crowd on hand and the announcements for the starting lineups barely audible, the Indians (15-4, 9-0) and Bulldogs prepared for their rivalry match, which could've vaulted Burbank into a tie for first place in league.
The Indians quickly silenced the Bulldogs' fans.
Burroughs scored the first three points of the first game and never trailed in the 19-minute affair. The Indians showed their depth at the start of the game, as five players registered a kill in their first 10 points.
"It's something different for us because the last few years we have had a couple of guys that we have had to rely on," Burroughs Coach Joel Brinton said. "This year, no one can camp out on one guy. I feel that we have five hitters that could put the ball away whenever we need to."
Brinton also stressed the need for his team to have a killer instinct.
"We've been stressing a lot at practice about trying to develop our killer instinct, from start to finish," he said. "Some matches we have come out strong in the beginning, some matches we have finished strong. That was the challenge for the whole match today. The guys did a great job of coming out strong."
Burroughs was strong in the second game, as well, taking a 10-1 lead in the opening minutes.
The third game was similar to the first two games, as the Indians built a quick lead and never trailed.
"We had a hard time containing their hitters on the pins," McMenamin said. "If it wasn't one side, it was the other side where they continually had success. Burroughs is a great team. They almost always come out strong. If we dig ourselves in too deep of a hole, it is tough to get out of."
Burroughs' Nick Van Loo helped put the Bulldogs in those holes. He had 10 kills and four aces. His brother, Ryan, had 29 assists. Burroughs' Jonathan Fuentes added 10 kills, Cameron Capili had six kills and Dalton Burroughs had five kills and a pair of aces.
"We wanted to come out hard and fast and show Burbank that we are the best team in league," Nick Van Loo said.
Daniel Choe had five assists for the Bulldogs, who should have nine returners on next year's team, when they'll try once again to defeat the Indians.