BURBANK — The Burroughs High baseball team saw something it could possibly exploit with the Hoover defense when the teams met Tuesday.
Starting with the first player that reached base, the Indians began to run and they didn't stop. Burroughs stole 10 bases, as the team continually put runners in scoring position that ultimately yielded a crop of runs.
The aggressive baserunning helped the Indians earn a 9-1 Pacific League win against the visiting Tornadoes, which enabled Burroughs to stay among the top-tier teams in league.
First-year Burroughs Coach Kiel Holmes said although his team is normally aggressive on the base paths, he wanted his runners to take a base whenever they could against Hoover (3-10-1, 1-4 in league).
"We knew that our team speed could beat what they had behind the dish," said Holmes, whose team is 6-9, 4-1. "From our scouting report, we knew we could run against them, so I wanted the guys to get after it."
Coming off of spring break last week, the Tornadoes came out sluggish. A trio of Hoover pitchers had problems throughout the first three innings, allowing the Indians to score eight runs.
The Tornadoes also suffered from depth problems, as only 10 players suited up.
"We just came out so flat," Hoover Coach Joe Cotti said. "This is our first game back after a week off and maybe that was the cause of how we played in the early innings. We just seemed rusty out there."
The Indians received a fine effort from starting pitcher Luis Pereyra. With an important league game looming Friday against rival Burbank, Holmes wanted to get four or five innings from his starter, and hopefully leave the rest up to his relievers.
Pereyra turned in a solid four-run performance, giving up two hits and one run while striking out four and not yielding a walk.
"It's nice that my teammates were able to get me the runs early," Pereyra. "That helped me pitch a little bit more comfortably."
Reliever Steven Cseh came in faced three batters in the fifth inning, as the Indians turned a double play behind him. Zane Carey retired the side in the sixth and seventh innings to end the game.
The Tornadoes were able to muster just two hits against the trio of Indians hurlers. Both of those hits came from Kevin Mendoza, who went two for three. He also scored the team's lone run in the fourth inning on an infield groundout by Thomas Alchermes.
Burroughs started its scoring with two runs in the first inning, aided by three consecutive base hits and a stolen base each from Dylan Goldsack, Chris Peale and Ryan Gordon.
The Indians brought nine players to the plate in the second inning and pushed across three runs to take a 5-0 advantage. Along with a double that scored two runs by Goldsack — the lone hit of the stanza — Burroughs also had two hit batsmen and three walks.
"We have to be aggressive in games," Holmes said. "With the way the high school game is now, it's more about getting the guy to second base. We need to stay out of the double plays and put guys in motion and also be aggressive at the plate as well."
The Indians received a run-scoring triple from Peale and a single from Brian Pozos to push across two more runs in the third inning. Miles Haddad tallied the Indians' final run in the fifth when he led off with a double, went to third on a passed ball and scored on a balk.
"Hopefully we can shake this rust off because we have Glendale on Friday," Cotti said. "With only 10 players, we have to work with what we have. It's tough because some of that crop is freshmen. They are learning on the fly."