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Indians show improvement

Jim Riggio

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.