GLENDALE — What could have very easily been labeled as a forgettable Friday was instead differently interpreted by Burroughs High first-year girls’ soccer Coach Brady Riggs.
His Indians struggled in both their matches of opening pool play action of the Los Tacos Holiday Festival Tournament at the Glendale Sports Complex, including dropping the afternoon contest, 5-0, versus Royal on a day in which the squad was outscored, 8-0.
Yet, there wasn’t much disappointment afterward, only some reflection.
“To be honest, I was happy to see the effort out there from the team. Look, nobody wants to lose, especially 5-0,” Riggs said. “But we lost to a better team. What I saw, other than the score, was that we didn’t quit, we kept on playing.
“That’s what impressed me, that we didn’t quit. Sure, we’d love to be winning, but winning starts with effort.”
Burroughs (1-5) will look to notch its first victory of the tournament Saturday morning at 11:30 a.m. versus Alemany, before playing in either a 2:30 p.m. or 3:45 tournament-concluding match.
Versus Royal, the Indians were outshot, 19-3, with only one offensive attempt qualifying as a shot on goal.
Yet, the score belies a somewhat even first 15 minutes in which the Indians only trailed, 1-0, and nearly knotted the match in the 13th minute when a cross from Danielle Tilton was popped up over two Highlanders defenders right to Indians senior Kelly Arrue.
The striker headed a shot into the upper left corner that required a leaping save for Royal goalie Mikale Hoosley.
“I just tried to get any part of my body on the ball to get a shot off,” Arrue said. “I thought it was a good shot, but they just made a good save.”
Shortly after that attempt, Royal took over behind junior forward Brea Pilkington, who finished with a hat trick.
Pilkington, who first scored in the seventh minute, gave the Highlanders their second goal, as well, in the 19th minute thanks to an assist from midfielder Sabrina Watson.
Royal then finished off its first-half scoring on a goal from Claudia Perez in the 24th minute that sent the Highlanders into the break up, 3-0.
Royal eventually added two more goals, including a final score from Pilkington in the 52nd minute that capped her hat trick and the match’s scoring.
Burroughs’ 5-0 defeat came on the heels of a 3-0 setback to Saugus in the morning in a match that was scoreless at the half.
“I thought we really battled out there and just lost to better teams. There’s not too much more you can say about that,” Riggs said. “We were even for certain parts of the matches and we were missing some players and we certainly know what we have to work on before [Pacific League] play starts. The good thing is that the effort is there.”