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Burbank High girls' volleyball takes down first-place Arcadia

Girls' volleyball: Bulldogs defeat league-leading Apaches in fourth game to earn Pacific League victory.

October 15, 2013|By Jeff Tully, jeff.tully@latimes.com

BURBANK — The Burbank High girls' volleyball team has dealt with a frustrating habit this season of playing well in the first game against an opponent only to fold in the latter games and suffer a loss.

That is just what happened to the Bulldogs last month against co-defending Pacific League champion Arcadia, when they played well in the opener only to lose to the Apaches in three.

It occurred again Thursday, when Burbank captured the first game against rival Burroughs only to go down to defeat in four.

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In the rematch with Arcadia on Tuesday, again the Bulldogs played solid volleyball out of the gate, notching a win in the first game.

But on this day, Burbank did not wilt. Instead, the Bulldogs almost came back from a huge deficit to take the second game and used that momentum to notch wins in the third and fourth stanzas, eventually walking away with a 25-20, 23-25, 25-15, 25-13 victory at home.

It was the first league loss for the Apaches (11-5, 7-1 in league), who entered the match in sole possession of first place in league. Arcadia is ranked No. 8 in the CIF Southern Section Division II-A poll, while the Bulldogs (9-6, 5-3) are unranked.

The win is also beneficial for Burroughs, which entered the contest one match behind Arcadia. With a four-game victory Tuesday against Glendale, Burroughs (10-5, 7-1) is tied for the league lead with the Apaches.

Although her team suffered a 26-24, 25-19, 25-20 loss to Arcadia on Sept. 19, Burbank Coach Sarah Brown knew her team could be competitive with the Apaches.

"Finally, you could see what this team is really capable of," said Brown, whose squad shared the league title with the Apaches last season. "You saw how good we can play in that first game against Burroughs. We knew the potential was there, we just needed to put it together and play like that for an entire match."

As has been the trend, Burbank played well in the early going. However, as much as the Bulldogs were clicking in the first game, they couldn't take more than a three-point lead. Midway through the game, Burbank errors allowed Arcadia to surge out in front, 16-15. But the Bulldogs snatched the lead back at 17-16 and built a four-point cushion at 21-17. The Apaches did get to within one of the lead, 21-20, before Burbank stepped up and won the next four points to close out the game.

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