Teams hoping to rebound

Burroughs, Burbank hope to contend for CIF after tough 2010 campaign.

August 27, 2011|By Jeff Tully,

It was a disappointing 2010 campaign for the two area boys' water polo programs.

Burbank High was able to secure the fourth and final CIF Southern Section Division V playoff spot from the Pacific League, but fell in the wild-card round against La Salle, 10-6.

Burroughs wasn't able to earn a postseason spot, as the Indians finished sixth in league.

The Indians did show promise late in the season, however, as they fell to the Bulldogs, 9-6, in the regular-season finale and almost defeated Arcadia, 8-7, in the consolation round of the Pacific League Tournament.


With their share of returning players, along with some new athletes who could make instant impacts, Burbank and Burroughs are hoping to bounce back this season.

Here is a look at how the teams are shaping up.


The Bulldogs have a new coach after the departure of Carlos Pelayo. Adam Wright, who headed the Burbank swimming program for a decade and who has overseen the aquatics programs at the school, takes over the helm.

"I have worked with some head water polo coaches here and I've been the [junior varsity] coach, but I don't think I've ever been the head coach," Wright said. "It's kind of the first time that it's all me. "But I am looking forward to it and the guys have been really great."

Although he was only inserted as the program's coach a few weeks ago, Wright said he likes what he sees with his squad.

"We have a lot of returning guys," he said. "There are some little changes here and there, and that's what kind of happens when a new coach comes in. But we have some guys who have the experience and they are looking good.

"We are getting a late start on things, but all the guys are working hard."

Leading the group of returners is Sam Akopyan, a senior all-league standout who will be the team's premier driver. Wright said they will rely on the left-hander a great deal this season to pace the offense.

Also returning are Kevin Miller, a senior hole-set, junior driver/defender Zach Card, Daniel Gonzalez, a junior hole-set, and sophomore goalkeeper Derek Baer.

Wright said he also expects sophomore Dante Nazarian, a transfer from Crescenta Valley, along with junior Sean Savoy, to also contribute.

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