After a year of practice, SLVHS’s Surf Team is ready for competition

SLV Surf team has been shredding the waves for the whole year now. SLV surf team practices year round, and competes in surf competitions against Santa Cruz high schools. Just recently the SLV Surf team competed in a surf competition in Santa Cruz against opponents from across the area. The SLV surf team competes alongside Scott’s Valley and Santa Clara. The three schools make up one surf team and each school contributes a few athletes and together they compete against other schools and teams.

The competition on Saturday the 28th was SLV, Scotts Valley, and Santa Clara against teams from the surrounding area, including Santa Cruz, Aptos, Soquel, and Half Moon Bay. SLV’s combined team did well with three athletes from the team competing in finals; however, none of them attend SLV. Liza Barton earned 5th place in the women’s shortboard final and 3rd in the women’s longboard final. Casey Walsh earned 2nd place in the women’s longboard final and her sister Kelly Walsh earned 6th in the same division.

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Photo by: Malcolm Northcott

The scoring for surf competitions can be a little tricky to understand. Points are awarded based on number of maneuvers and having power, speed, flow and control while surfing the most powerful part of the wave. Surfing starts at the double horn/green flag. The more waves someone catches, the more points they will receive. In the words of Coach Joni Martin, “It’s also a very good idea to watch conditions long enough so you feel you understand where the waves are breaking, how frequently, where the best ones are breaking, where you could imagine yourself sitting to get them, and what you’d want to do riding them.”

A surfer must also catch at least two waves to qualify. During competitions, there is no dropping in on other surfers. Surfers either compete in longboard or shortboard competitions. Short boards are more maneuverable and responsive; however, long boards can be faster if they are ridden correctly. Longboards must be a minimum of 9 feet. Shortboards can’t be longer than 7’6¨

The team meets weekly to practice and competes in competitions. Surf club meets once a month. Both the team and the club meet in room E-4 (ASB room) during lunch to discuss upcoming events and opportunities. The size of the surf and the weather can often dictate when practices can happen. If the waves are too big or too choppy, the team will try and find another spot to surf; however, it doesn’t always work out most of the coast may have similar waves.

The SLV Surf team has some very solid and able surfers. Some of the surfers include Teo Deutsch, Shay Monowitz, Jazz Khokhar, Will Sutton, and Apple Hart. In the words of Will Sutton, “We have been working very well together, and we have some real good surfers.” Surfing can be a very exhilarating and exciting and each member of the surf team is enthusiastic about competition.

By: Gabriel Michaud


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