BURBANK — Burbank High quarterback Aram Araradian has a range of options all over the field.
In a Pacific League battle against Pasadena at Memorial Field on Thursday, not only were Burbank’s running and passing plays diverse, but they took time and were drawn out, giving the host Bulldogs plenty of opportunities.
With 422 yards on offense and five players scoring touchdowns, Burbank came out the top dog in a 39-21 victory.
“They’re talented kids, man,” Burbank coach Adam Colman said. “We have a lot of weapons, and when our ground game is working like it was tonight, it’s kind of pick your poison. You can’t double both of them and stop the run. It is what it is.”
Araradian, a junior, threw two touchdowns and had an interception while amassing 256 yards on 14 of 24 passing. Receiver Brandon Pena caught nine passes for 189 yards and a touchdown and receiver Ben Burnham, who had a record-breaking performance last week against Arcadia, had four catches for 61 yards and a touchdown.
“I can’t thank them enough,” Araradian said. “I put the ball in the spot and they go and get it. They’re guys that get yards after a catch, so it could be a 10-yard pass and they’ll go.”
The Burbank running game also caused problems, as Isaac Glover scored two touchdowns in 29 carries for142 yards, while Tyler Murphy scored on a two-yard touchdown run. Araradian also got into the end zone on a five-yard run.
“The blocking opened up the holes and created the run game. That’s it,” Glover said. “Got to thank the linemen.”
In the opening drive of the game, Burbank (3-3, 2-0 in league) converted on fourth down on its way to a 19-yard touchdown pass from Araradian to Pena at the 8:51 mark.
On its next possession, Burbank capped a 15-play series with a six-yard run from Glover for a 14-0 lead with 1:57 left in the quarter.
“We had a great start to the game,” Colman said. “We came out ready to go, which was key. The offense executed well early on, especially in crucial situations — a couple third downs, even a fourth down in there. We executed and kept the drive alive.”
An eight-yard run from Pasadena running back Au’Dante Bailey sliced the Burbank lead to 14-7 just as the first quarter expired.
It took 10 plays for the hosts to get their third touchdown with a four-yard run from Glover to make it a 20-7 lead at 7:11 in the second.
The Burbank defense forced Pasadena (3-2, 0-2) to turn the ball over on downs with 55.7 left in the half, and the hosts took full advantage one play later when Araradian connected with Burnham on a 25-yard pass to put Burbank up, 27-7.
Burbank’s offense slowed in the third quarter, but a five-yard run from Araradian extended the host’s lead to 33-7 with 1:49 left in the quarter.
Pasadena answered right back as Bailey took off for a 68-yard kickoff return to cut the lead to 33-14 with 1:38 remaining in the third quarter.
Murphy finished off a 12-play drive with a two-yard run to give Burbank a 39-21 lead before Pasadena running back Mekhi Fox capped the scoring with a 60-yard touchdown run with 8:00 remaining.