November 14, 2009 UPDATE
Burbank fights its way past Burroughs
By Mark Dittmer Special to the Daily News
Updated: 11/14/2009 12:26:51 AM PST
PREP FOOTBALL: Bethany, Seidler help Burbank lock up Pacific No. 1 seed.
After a hit like the one Sam Bethany absorbed as he crossed the goal line for Burbank High's first touchdown Friday night, taking the rest of the night off would be understandable.
Instead, he came back on the very next offensive series, using a diving catch to set up his second touchdown, giving Burbank the lead and the momentum going into halftime of what would be a 28-21 victory over its intra-city rivalry showdown against Burroughs High.
The victory secured a tie for first in the Pacific League, and guarantees Burbank goes in as the No. 1-seeded team.
On a night of bit hits, it was Burbank High linebacker Ryan Seidler who delivered the game's final one, sacking Burroughs quarterback Lucas Yanez in the final minute on fourth down to set off bedlam on the Burbank sideline as the Bulldogs celebrated their first win over the Indians since 2004.
"I'm just pretty shocked," said Seidler. "After I made that tackle, I didn't know what to think. I was going out of mind. I'm still out there."
There was plenty of time left for the momentum to change after Bethany's early heroics, and it did - the Indians recaptured it at times in the second half with a couple of big plays.
First, they tied it up when Justin Mayorga picked up a Colman fumble (on a botched handoff intended for Ulises Ochoa) and ran it into the end zone from 20 yards out to tie the game at 14 in the third quarter.
It happened again in the final seconds of the third quarter, when Burroughs running back Dalton Williams took one to the house. It was easy to overlook Williams' speed as he spent most of the game grinding out short gains in between tackles, but there was no mistaking it when he burst free on a sweep left for a 79-yard touchdown score that put Burroughs ahead 21-20.
But in each case, the Burbank offense responded. This was in large part thanks to Ochoa, a fast back in his own right.
Ochoa broke free for a 44-yard run after the Mayorga score that helped set up Burbank's third touchdown minutes later.
And it was also thanks to Bulldog wide receiver Jackson Diamond, whom Colman could seemingly always find when he needed a receiver - including on many plays where Colman seemed like he would be wrapped up for a loss; on many other plays when the Bulldogs (8-2, 6-1) needed a first down; and on two-point conversions (the receiver caught passes to score two of them).
"I'm so happy for everbody. This is something we've all dreamed of and worked toward since last season." Colman said.
Meanwhile, Seidler and the Bulldog defense held Burroughs (8-2, 6-1) to all of 11 yards passing, leaving Williams and the Indians running game attempting to win the game by themselves.
They almost managed it. Getting the ball back down 28-21 with 1:45 left to play, Williams carried four final times for 32 yards to advance past midfield - he finished with 217 yards on 29 carries. But when the Indians took to the air after that with less than a minute remaining, they were no more successful than they had been in the game's previous 47 minutes.
Burbank's first touchdown came on a 4th-and-goal option play on the Burroughs 1. Burbank quarterback Adam Colman made the toss to Bethany at the last possible minute, and the running back took a vicious hit from the Indians' Daniel Atlas as he crossed the goal line.
Atlas forced a fumble, but it came an instant after Bethany had crossed.
It was 7-6 Burroughs, after a missed Burbank PAT try.
The ensuing Burroughs drive went three-and-out and gave Burbank a chance to run its own two-minute drill. After a pass interference penalty put the ball near midfield, Colman threw a bomb down the left sideline that resulted in Bethany's driving catch and a 38-yard gain.
Three plays later, Colman found Bethany in the end zone on another fourth-and-goal play, this time on a pass in the left flat for a 7-yard touchdown score. A two-point conversion made it 14-7 Burbank at the half.
The Bulldogs bounced back after falling behind 7-0 to the Indians, who scored on the game's first possession.
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