Something obviously happened to the returning members of the
Burroughs’ High boys’ varsity soccer team since last season.
That something was evident immediately Monday evening when the
Indians opened summer league play with a 3-1 over a talented Granada
Hills High team in the High School Boys’ Summer League.
The Indians showed improvement all over the field, and dominated
after Granada Hills put up a strong fight in the first half.
Most impressive was the play in the midfield, and with the
Indians’ offensive attack. Chris Leiva and J.D. Caravantes controlled
most of the play in the midfield and were able to find Raul Medina
open on both the wings, as well a the middle.
In the backfield, Jason Salazar controlled things in the middle
and Marco Gomez was very effective on the left side.
“I didn’t think we’d do this well, but they showed me some
things,” said Salazar, an All-CIF Southern Section and All-Foothill
League selection last season who will be a senior in September.
Both teams played fine soccer throughout much of the match, which
is uncharacteristic for an early summer match.
“When we got the ball up top, we tried to get Chris and J.D. the
ball as much as possible,” Burroughs Coach Mike Kodama said.
Leiva and Caravantes continued to get the ball to Medina, who came
close on scoring several times early on. But it wasn’t until the 38th
minute that the Indians were able to get on the board. Medina made a
nice cross-pass into the box to an oncoming Chris Pennington, who put
the offering into the net.
Pennington’s goal was surprising for Burroughs, considering the
player spent last season as a defender on the junior varsity team and
was playing up front simply as an experiment by Kodama.
Medina took a Leiva pass on a breakaway in the 44th minute to put
Burroughs up, 2-0.
The Indians stretched their lead to 3-0, as they were awarded a
penalty kick following a foul on Medina.
Leiva converted the penalty kick.
Kodama’s team received a huge match from Medina, who played up
front last season with leading scorer Sean Lowe -- who has graduated.
"[Medina will] have to take up the load,” Kodama said. “We’re
expecting big things from Raul.”
Medina’s strike partner up front will likely be sophomore Justin
Zepeda, who played well for the Indians.
Granada Hills got a goal back in the 60th minute when Kevin Garcia
hit a nice right-footed shot outside the box that sailed into the
upper left corner of the goal.
Leiva had a chance to give Burroughs another goal in the 69th
minute, as he faked out a defender and fired a left-footed shot that
was pushed out and over the goal for a corner kick.
In goal, Burroughs received a good effort from Marlon Del Valle.
The Indians resume summer league play today with a 6:15 p.m. match
against Foothill League foe Valencia at Hart High.