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Indians fall in second round

GIRLS’ BASKETBALL: Villa Park disposes of Burroughs in CIF.

February 24, 2010|By Edgar Melik-Stepanyan

BURROUGHS HIGH — Burroughs High girls’ basketball Coach Vicky Oganyan knew for her team to have any chance of defeating second-seeded Villa Park on Saturday, it had to limit its turnovers.

Unfortunately for Oganyan and the Indians, Burroughs couldn’t limit its miscues, and didn’t have the balance, speed or strength that visiting Villa Park possessed.

The Spartans forced 11 turnovers in the second quarter en route to scoring 25 unanswered points during the second and third quarters, as they easily defeated the host Indians, 73-36, in the CIF Southern Section Division IIAA playoffs.

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“We gave them a ton of possessions by turning the ball over,” said Oganyan, whose team finished the season 19-10. “[Our turnovers] opened up their transition game.

“We knew if we had turnovers we were going to lose big time.”

Burroughs’ turnovers led to a number of easy baskets for Brianna Salvatore —who has committed to UC Davis — and sophomore Connie Ballestero of Villa Park (22-6).

Salvatore had a game-high 25 points and dominated from the outside and inside. Midway through the third quarter, the senior — who also sank four three-pointers — had 18 points while the Indians were stuck on 19 as a team. Ballestero added 20 points.

Shomari McCorkle had 10 points and Nicole Ballestero, who will play at the University of San Diego, had eight points for Villa Park, which lost to Mater Dei in last year’s semifinals.

“They have four guards who can shoot the three like crazy,” Oganyan said. “They’re all three-point shooters.”

Burroughs — which finished third in the Pacific League — stayed close with Villa Park in the first quarter, trailing, 18-14, at the end of the first eight minutes. But the fast-paced game was exactly what the Spartans wanted.

The Indians couldn’t keep pace in the second and third quarters, as Villa Park outscored Burroughs, 48-15, in those two quarters.

“We had to take care of the ball, and we didn’t,” Oganyan said. “They were up in our faces on defense.”

Less than a minute into the fourth quarter, Villa Park scored to take a 40-point lead, resulting in the mandatory running clock for the rest of the quarter.

Oganyan took solace in the fact that 10 of her 14 players will return next season, including junior Lisha Elsenbach, who had a team-high 13 points. Senior teammates Erika Rivera had 11 points and Christine Aguilar had eight.

“We had a good year,” Oganyan said. “They played hard. We want to take that and go into spring and summer and work on individual skills.”


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