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Burroughs grinds out win

Jeff Tully

There is not a lot of flash and pizazz with this year’s Burroughs

High girls’ basketball team.

The Indians don’t deliver head-turning passes, they don’t


overwhelm opponents with a potent fastbreak and they aren’t going to

impress anyone with a great deal of finesse.

Instead, Burroughs is a grinding, hard-working team that isn’t

afraid to mix it up with hard-nosed play.


The Indians put their indomitable style to good use on Thursday in

a 19th annual Burroughs/Optimist Tournament pool-play game against

North Hollywood. Burroughs scrapped and muscled its way to a 52-27

victory at Burroughs.

“We are just a bunch of grinders,” said Burroughs Coach Doug

Nicol, whose team is 3-4. “We are just a blue-collar type of team. We

go out there and work hard for our points.

“We don’t look pretty doing it, and we aren’t going to impress a


lot of teams, but we are able to get the job done.

“Our job is going to be to wear teams down and work hard to win


Winning has been a work in progress for this season’s Indians.

After star point guard Tulyah Gaines -- who has signed with

University of Notre Dame -- transferred prior to the season, Nicol

had to rework his lineup, which included giving the starting

point-guard duties to freshman Britney Morgan.


It also didn’t help when seniors Jessica Sandoval and Cassie Mello

went down with injuries and senior Jayde Dennis was involved in a

horrific car accident.

The team has also been affected by flu.

“We have players who are still suffering from the flu,” Nicol

said. “Val Rico is still in bad shape because she hasn’t gotten over

the flu.

“The season is only a few weeks old, and already we have had to

endure a lot of things.”

Burroughs looked like it was going to get more bad news when

Dennis went down with an injury to her right ankle with eight seconds

left in the third quarter. However, Nicol said the injury isn’t

serious and he will wait until the next game to see if the senior

will be ready to go.

With so many mishaps and injuries with his players, one would

think Nicol cringes every time one of the Indians goes down hard on

the floor.”

“To tell you the truth, we’re kind of used to it by now,” he said.

“When one of the girls goes down, we take care of her and get ready

to put another player in. That’s all you can do,”

Despite being a little under the weather, senior Val Rico led the

Indian charge against North Hollywood (1-7). Rico did her best work

around the basket, muscling her way for 11 points, 11 rebounds, five steals and two blocks.

Dennis also did her part, scoring 12 points in three quarters and

Morgan added eight.

“Val did a great job down low for us,” Nicol said. “She is one of

our players who doesn’t mind getting in there and getting down and

dirty to score points.”

North Hollywood was paced by Lauren Trenor and Karla Moran, who

scored seven points each.

After enjoying just a six-point lead after the first quarter, the

Indians settled down and began to take control of the game.

Burroughs outscored the Huskies, 14-5, in the second quarter.

North Hollywood was hounded by Burroughs’ swarming pressure

defense, which led to six Husky turnovers in the quarter.