The 30th edition of the Burbank Invitational was a little different
than meets of the past.
For one, the track and field event was at Burroughs’ Memorial
Field instead of at Burbank High, because of ongoing construction
that has rendered the Bulldog track unusable.
Also, since the meet was rained out a week earlier, Saturday’s
event featured far less teams than in the years past.
However, despite the setbacks, and change of venue, it was a meet
that was far from disappointing. The event had its share of great
performances, and the small field of teams offered some local
athletes a chance to shine.
Host Burbank High won the girls’ varsity competition with 99
points, knocking off Foothill League rival Saugus (second; 86 points)
and Burroughs (third; 68).
Burroughs won the sweepstakes trophy by accumulating 384 points
between the Indians’ two varsity and two freshmen-sophomore squads.
L.A. Loyola High won the boys’ varsity with 149 points.
“I’m happy for the girls’ varsity,” Burbank Coach Darin Wolf
said. “There was a good overall team effort.”
While Burbank didn’t dominate in any event, it posted good marks
across the board.
The Bulldogs’ 440-yard relay team of London Figueroa, Ebony
Crouch, Judy Maxwell and Carolyn Chrzan won the race in 52.9 seconds,
and the Bulldog group of Quintasha Mixon, Kelly Atkins and Figueroa
finished in 1:00.53 to win the 300-meter shuttle relay.
Burbank also finished first in the 4 x 220 relay in 1:55.1, as
Mixon, Samantha Rivero, Crouch and Maxwell ran legs, and Jennifer
Anderson won the shot put with a winning effort of 33 feet 9 inches.
“This is her first year throwing,” Wolf said of the senior, who
plays on the girls’ volleyball team -- also coached by Wolf. “I told
her you’d make a great shot putter, and she won.”
The Burbank boys’ team competed in the meet short-handed, as its
top two distance runners -- Kyle Ivie and Stratos Christianakis --
missed the event to take an academic test.
“I was really looking forward to have our best team in the
distance medley,” Wolf said.
While Burbank might have come out on top in the girls’
competition, Burroughs was tough in all divisions.
The Indians won the four-mile relay in 23:38.0, powered by Adriana
Powers, Hillary Duran, Katie Vahoviak and Carolyn Brown.
A Burroughs team of Ruben Banzali, R.J. De Los Santos, Sean Allen
and David Brooks won the boys’ sprint medley in 3:43.8. The event
leads off with a 440 leg, followed by two 220s and an 880.
The Indian boys’ sprinters did well in the 4 x 220 relay,
finishing only behind Woodland Hills Taft, one of the top programs in
the state. Taft, which is coached by 1992 Olympic 400-meter gold
medalist Quincy Watts, won the race in 1:30.1.
Burroughs captured the top three spots in the girls’ 3,200 with
Vahoviak winning in 12:29.1, followed by Brown in 12:43.4 and Powers
Along with the running races, Burroughs also did well in the field
On the boys’ side, Juan Flores won the boys’ discus (143-1), Mike
Ortega won the boys’ pole vault (13-0) and Tulyah Gaines won the
girls’ long jump (15-4 1/2) and finished second in the triple jump
The best mark of the meet came in the boys’ mile relay, as Taft --
after hearing the meet record was 3:19.1 -- did all it could to break
the mark, which was set in 1978 by Wilmington Banning. Running
virtually alone the entire race, Taft finished in 3:22.8.
The Toreadors, who finished second in the state in the event last
season, competed in just a few events in the meet, and held out
several top athletes from its football team.
“This was the first time of us running the four-by-four,” Watts
said of the mile-relay team.
“It was a good meet for us overall. The kids had fun and we got
to work on some things.”