Although the fires that are raging across Southern California are
miles away from Burbank, local high school sports have been affected
by the fallout from the blazes.
On Tuesday, the girls’ Foothill League tennis match between
Burbank and Burroughs highs was postponed because of unhealthful air
Indian and Bulldog teams that play their contests outside and
didn’t have games Tuesday, were told to curtail their practices
because of excessive particulate matter in the air generated by the
“The word came down about [1 p.m.] that our match with Burroughs
was canceled for [Tuesday],” Burbank girls’ tennis Coach Paul McNiff.
“I think the concern was that the air quality was at a dangerous
level and they didn’t want to take the chance.”
Burbank players were disappointed with the postponement of the
cross-town rivalry match with the Indians.
“We were ready to play and we wanted to play against Burroughs,”
Bulldog doubles player Diane Grair said. "[The air] really wasn’t
that bad, but they told us we couldn’t play.”
LeeAnn O’Toole, administrative assistant to Burbank School
District Superintendent Gregory Bowman, said a correspondence was
sent to district schools Tuesday informing them to “limit or restrict
O’Toole also said the information was sent to the schools
following a report from the South Coast Air Quality Management
District that air quality would be unhealthful or dangerous in the
“We weren’t able to practice [Tuesday] at all,” Burbank girls’
cross-country Coach Darin Wolf said.
“All you have to do is go outside and see how bad it is out
Wolf said his team is preparing for the Foothill League final next
week, and his runners can’t take time off from practicing in the wake
of the fires.
“We were going to try and go out to Santa Monica [Tuesday] to work
out,” he said. "[On Wednesday] we might try to go out to the desert
by Quartz Hill to get a practice in.”
Said Burroughs girls’ tennis Coach Roy Bernhardt: “I don’t know if
we will be able to play or practice the rest of the week. We have to
wait and see.”
While some Burbank and Burroughs teams did not work out or play
Tuesday, other squads did practice. The Bulldog football and baseball
teams and the Indian football team were out in the conditions
conducting practices on their respective campuses.
“I was told that I couldn’t practice,” Burroughs baseball Coach
Tom Crowther said. “So I moved my players inside one of the
classrooms for a chalk-talk session.
“I thought they didn’t want us out there practicing.”