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Late heroics lifts Burroughs

Jeff Tully

The Burroughs High softball team has had to battle back in its share

of games this season.

So it was nothing new for the Indians to find themselves trailing


North Hills L.A. Baptist in the third-place Gold Bracket game of the

third annual San Fernando Valley Victory Spring Classic.

Despite the challenging situation Saturday, Burroughs climbed its

way back to defeat the Knights, 3-2, in eight innings at the Hjelte


Sports Complex in Encino.

“I’m going to start calling this team the comeback kids,”

Burroughs Coach Jennifer Gomez said. “We always seem to get behind

and we have to battle our way back.

“But its nice to see the kids come back. They never give up in

games, even when we are losing. They really believe that they can

come back.”

Placing third in the talent-rich tournament is something of a


surprise to Gomez.

“That’s pretty good, to finish third against some pretty good

teams,” she said. “We did better this year than we did last year, and

we were loaded last year.”

After losing to Crescenta Valley earlier in the day, 2-1, in a

tournament semifinal game, the Indians drew L.A Baptist, the No.

2-ranked team in CIF Southern Section Division V.

As was the case against CV, Burroughs sent senior pitcher Dani


Regan to the circle for back-to-back performances.

Regan (7-5) responded with her second fine outing of the day,

throwing eight innings, allowing seven hits, two earned runs,

striking out six and walking four.

“It was another very long day for Dani,” Gomez said. “But she

seems to always come through for us when we need her.”

Regan out dueled L.A. Baptist standout pitcher Katie Gustaveson,

who allowed seven hits, two earned runs, struck out nine and walked

one in eight innings.

The Indians (8-5) battled back from a 2-1 deficit to win the game

in the eighth inning on some good hitting and smart baserunning.

In an international tie-breaker, Burroughs began the eighth with

Sara Budrick on third base with two out. Ryanne Hodgins slapped a

ball to second base and beat out the throw to score the runner and

tie the score at 2. Hodgins then stole second on the first pitch.

After fouling two pitches off of Gustaveson, Rachel Ross singled

to right field and Hodgins was able to motor home when the Knight

fielder bobbled the ball.

“That was just a great at-bat for Rachel,” Gomez said. “She was up

there battling and she was determined to put the ball in play.”

Burroughs scored its first run in the first inning when a

groundout by Samantha Valenzuela scored Lisa Dennis.

Hodgins went two for four with a run batted in, a run scored and a

stolen base. Hodgins is leading the Indians with a .449 average and

has 22 hits.