What began as a day of great hope for the USA Junior Surf Team turned into a disaster as eight of the eleven team-members still alive in competition were eliminated from the event.
With a shocking start in Under 16’s as Evan Thompson, Evan Geiselman and Kolohe Andino all went down in their first heats of the day along with Micheal Dunphy in Under 18’s and Amy Nichol in the Girls.
Kaleigh Gilchrist managed to get through a round before losing out too, but the biggest shock of the day was the loss of Courtney Conlogue as she lost out in a heat won by team-mate Sage Erickson and then lost again in her Repercharge/Losers heat to be eliminated from the competition.
Dane Zaun in Under 16’s suffered his first loss but is still alive in Repercharge/Losers rounds a mere three heat wins from the medals.
The bright sparks for the USA Surf team for the day were Sage Erickson with her heat winning performance and Cory Arrambide who surfed through three Repercharge/Loser round heats to keep his medal hopes alive.
In the team medal quest the Aussies and Brasileros have separated themselves from the pack and the battle for Gold will be between them. The remaining slots on the podium, bronze and copper will be fought for by the Hawaiians, South Africans, New Zealanders and the USA Surf Team depending on who can get their remaining team-mates through to the finals.
Peter “PT” Townend