Football Playoff Preview: Burbank vs. Don Lugo

The Burbank High football team will take on host Don Lugo on Friday in the first round of the CIF Soutjern Section Division VII playoffs.
(Miguel Vasconcellos)


WHEN: 7 p.m. Friday

WHERE: Don Lugo High (Chino)

RECORDS: The Bulldogs and Conquistadores are both 4-6

LAST WEEK: Burbank lost to Burroughs, 29-28; Don Lugo defeated Diamond Bar, 16-13

OUTLOOK: It will be battle of sub-.500 teams when Burbank and Don Lugo face one another once again in what has become a reoccurring postseason match up in recent years in the Division VII opener. The teams will square off for the third time in four seasons in the playoffs. The teams are 1-1 against one another during that span. In 2017, the Conquistadores earned a 28-7 win in the Division VII semifinals and in 2016, Burbank registered a 44-14 victory in the Division VIII semifinals. The Bulldogs enter the game after suffering a loss against cross-town rival Burroughs in the annual “Big Game.” Under coach Adam Colman, Burbank finished tied for third in the Pacific League with a 3-3 record and earned the final automatic playoff berth from the league. Pasadena was awarded an at-large berth. Burbank began the season 1-3. The Bulldogs played last week’s game without junior quarterback Aram Araradian, who was sidelined with a shoulder injury. It was the second straight game the signal-caller missed after injuring his shoulder in a league game against Muir on Oct. 14. In eight games, he has completed 112 of 199 passes for 1,933 yards, 13 touchdowns and eight interceptions. Against Burroughs, the Bulldogs received a fine effort on the ground from senior running back Isaac Glover, who had 33 carries for 190 yards and three touchdowns. On the season, Glover has amassed 843 yards and has scored 12 touchdowns. Don Lugo enters the opening-round playoff game having won its last three contests, after starting the season 0-4. The Conquistadores went 3-2 in the Mt. Baldy League to finish in a three-way tie for third place behind champion Chaffey. In Friday’s win, against Diamond Bar, freshman kicker Mackenzie Aguilera converted a 25-yard field goal with 10 seconds remaining to break a 13-13 tie, securing an automatic playoff spot for Don Lugo and coach Greg Gano. The winner of Friday’s game will take on top-seed Serrano (10-0) or Canyon Country Canyon (2-8) in a quarterfinal contest Nov. 15.

SOMETHING INTERESTING: While Burbank is averaging 25.4 points and surrendering 23.1 points a game, Don Lugo averages 16 points a contest and gives up 22.5.

Under second-year coach Rand Holdren, the Indians finished the season 6-4 and 2-4 in the Pacific League, tied for fifth. Only the top three teams in league — Crescenta Valley, Muir and Burbank — earned automatic playoff berths. Pasadena was given a wild-card entry into the postseason. The Indians were hoping to earn a wild-card berth, but they were denied in CIF Southern Section Division XI. Teams earning at-large entries into the playoffs from the division were Pasadena (6-3), Claremont (6-4), Brentwood (7-3) and Laguna Hills (5-5). It is the fourth straight season Burroughs has not made the playoffs.