BURBANK — The momentum on offense disappeared as the turnovers piled up for the Burbank High girls’ basketball team in the second half of a summer league game at home against Saugus.
The Centurions blocked shots and stole possession countless times as the second half progressed, and in turn, scored 15 unanswered points to close out the game.
Burbank failed to score in the final 10 minutes of the second half and fell, 43-21, to Saugus in a Burbank Summer League game Wednesday.
The final basket for Burbank came with 10:01 remaining from Bulldogs senior Bri Castro, who sank one of her three free throws to cut into Saugus’ 28-21 lead.
After that, the Centurions stole possession 10 times and blocked four shots in the second half.
Saugus knocked down two three-pointers, two field goals and five free throws to close the game out on a 15-0 run. The Bulldogs’ final shot from the field came at 12:20 off of a put-back lay-up from senior Adelina Bandarian.
“At about the 10-minute mark I made the decision to go with our younger players,” Burbank coach Jett Del Mundo said. “I don’t want to go after this thing where we’re not playing like we want to go after it, so I put in the younger girls for experience.
“In hindsight, I don’t know if that was the greatest call, but they have to learn how to play against a good team that’s moving the ball. I had a freshman out there that looked like a freshman, but that’s why you play summer, right? I’m going to say it was the right call. We just have to learn.”
Castro was Burbank’s main source of scoring in the first half with nine points on three-of-seven shooting with two three-pointers. She led all scorers with 15 points.
“Bri is an excellent shooter,” Del Mundo said. “I think she gets frustrated when the score doesn’t go your way and then you start to miss. Then you can see the body language drop. That’s no surprise. That’s no secret, so that’s something we have to fix and get her back on track.”
In contrast, Saugus had six players scorer in the first half. Riley Phipps, Maliah Sourgose and Lulu Salloom each scored eight points for Saugus. Sourgose recorded five rebounds and five assists alone and Salloom added 11 rebounds and four steals. Madison Seyforth contributed seven points, six rebounds, four blocks and five steals for the Centurions.
“I just told them we needed to move the ball,” Saugus coach Jason Conn said. “Less dribbling, move yourself, get open, find the open man to keep moving and good things are going to happen. We did that. If we keep the ball moving, we’re going to get wide-open shots.”
Saugus jumped out to a 6-0 advantage four minutes into the game. Castro knocked down a far two-point shot and sank a three to follow to cut the Centurions’ lead to 7-5 at the 11:30 mark of the first half.
Another Castro three gave Burbank its first lead, 8-7, at 10:52. At that point, only Castro and Emily Megerdichian put up shot attempts for the Bulldogs.
“I had some players that really wanted to win this game,” Del Mundo said. “In fact, I gave them a choice the other day and asked them if they wanted to take a day off. They said, ‘No, we want to play.’ I took that to heart and I felt like some of my girls really wanted to win this game. They’re at home. They want to compete. They want to win.
“The other half of my team, not so much, and when you get half a team playing and half that doesn’t, then you get what you got.”
The teams traded lead changes before Saugus found some momentum at the end of the first half to take a 19-13 lead into halftime.