BURBANK — The Burroughs High girls’ volleyball team headed crosstown to Burbank to end the regular season with a rivalry match and a share of the Pacific League title on the line.
The Indians did what they intended to do, defeating the Bulldogs, 25-16, 25-21, 21-25, 25-13, and sweeping the two-match season series.
The win earned Burroughs (24-7, 13-1 in league) a second consecutive league crown, which it shared with Arcadia (23-3, 13-1).
In identical fashion to last season, the Indians recovered from its 3-1 loss to Arcadia early in the season and swept the Apaches in the rematch en route to the league crown.
“I’m pleased that just the one match with Arcadia was the little dip, but we are a lot better than we were back then,” Burroughs coach Edwin Real said.
Even with the loss, Burbank (14-15, 9-5) still heads to the postseason, sharing third place with Crescenta Valley (23-11-1, 9-6), who was swept by Arcadia on Thursday.
“I think we’re pretty fired up for the postseason,” Burbank coach Karl Rojo said. “The last [eight] matches, including this one, we’ve won the last six ... so our momentum is a lot better than the start of the season.
“The vibes and the chemistry is a lot better and I think they’re engaged and focused on going to CIF. They’re really looking forward to it.”
Juliana Van Loo led the Indians with a match-high 16 kills and added four blocks. Lydia Grote added 14 kills, six of which came in the final game, and Camila Sanchez-Tellez tallied four blocks.
Catie Treadway finished with a Burbank-high 15 kills, along with two aces in the third set, to rally the Bulldogs for the game win.
The Indians benefited from the Bulldogs’ early serving struggles, as Burbank committed six serving errors while Burroughs got into its groove.
The Bulldogs were able to stay within five points of the Indians in the first game, but with the score 20-15, the Indians outscored Burbank, 5-1, the rest of the way to notch the win.
Burbank battled back in the second game and forced nine ties before a pair of Bulldog errors and Burroughs kills from Catie Virtue and Juliana Van Loo saw the Indians win to take a 2-0 advantage.
Burroughs took a 16-11 lead in the third game lead before Burbank tied it at 16 on a 5-0 run. The Bulldogs extended the run to 8-0 with two aces from Catie Treadway and an Olivia Price kill for a 19-16 lead.
“I thought our passing was a little bit better,” said Rojo about the third-game rally. “ … We started executing in the slots that we were giving them, which helped us out. Our blocking helped, our defense was more on point and I think we were all just fired up and rallied with the plays that we were stringing together.”
Van Loo added two kills to pull Burroughs to within 20-19, but errors on the Indians’ side gave Burbank the win in the third set.
“Burbank had a nice lead with their serving,” Van Loo said. “Ashley [Eskander] had a nice serving run and I think the emotions and the crowd got to our players.”
Grote took over in the fourth game and tallied five kills for an early 6-1 Burroughs lead.
“Lydia came out and took charge,” Real said. “Shea [McGovern] started the sets a little better and I told her to focus more on her setting and not so much on her blocking. We were kind of worried about what [Burbank] was doing, and we told them to worry about your setting, put the ball where the hitter can hit it and it proved right.”
The Indians had their largest lead of the match with a 17-4 advantage in the fourth set, and Van Loo and Virtue found their strides and contributed nine points all together to close out the Bulldogs.
“For the past week or so, we just knew we had to do work to get that league title and share with Arcadia, and I think we did that tonight,” Van Loo said. “All of our hard work leading up to this match paid off and now we’re just focused on going in to CIF.”