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Burroughs basketball sees one slip away in overtime against Muir

Basketball: Indians can't maintain lead late, opening door for Mustangs in Pacific League contest.

February 11, 2014|By Jeff Tully, jeff.tully@latimes.com
(Raul Roa Staff Photographer )

BURBANK — Burroughs High's boys' basketball team was the team to beat after the first half of the Pacific League season. Not only were the Indians in first place, but they were undefeated.

However, in the second half of league, Burroughs has been eliminated from title contention and the Indians are just trying to hang on for victories

Although the Indians battled in their league game Tuesday against Muir, they came up short again — which has been the theme for the squad during the second half of league play.

On the strength of 30 points from Dejon Williams, the Mustangs were able to steal a win from host Burroughs in overtime, 73-70.

The loss was the fourth in the last six league games for the Indians (16-9, 8-5 in league). It also leaves them tied for third place in league with Muir (11-12, 8-5). Luckily for Burroughs, it already has an automatic CIF Southern Section playoff locked up. That's because even through fifth-place Burbank (12-13, 6-7) defeated Glendale Tuesday, 47-27, the Bulldogs are still two games behind the Indians and Mustangs with one game to play.

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The top four finishers in league get automatic berths into the postseason.

It is the first time since the 2008-09 season that Burroughs has finished among the top four teams in the Pacific League. That year, the Indians ended in a three-way tie for second with Burbank and Crescenta Valley.

Burroughs will close out the regular season Thursday at home against Burbank.

"This leaves us battling it out with Muir for the third and fourth spots in league," Burroughs Coach Adam Hochberg said. "We have to come in ready to play Thursday against Burbank."

The Indians suffered from the same problem against Muir on Tuesday that they did when the Mustangs earned a 71-69 victory Jan. 21. They just couldn't come up with a way to stop Williams. The senior guard continually zig-zagged his way around the Burroughs defense and converted on his share of long-range shots. Williams' game-high 30 points included seven three-pointers.

"My teammates and I train for big games like this," said Williams, who also had four steals. "We have been to overtime in league a lot of times this year, so we knew what to expect and we knew what it took to win a game in overtime. We just played hard all game and we never gave up."

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