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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Hawai'i juniors making run at titles

Advertiser Staff

All 12 Hawai'i surfers remained in contention at the Quiksilver ISA World Junior Surfing Championships yesterday.

The third day of the contest was held in 3- to 5-foot waves at Maresias Beach, Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Maui's Granger Larsen led the way, receiving the highest score of the day in his second-round victory in the Boys under 16 division. His two best waves received scores of 8.67 (out of 10) and 7.6 for a total of 16.27.

"I was pretty warmed up before I went out. I felt good and my board felt good," Larsen said. "There's a beachbreak right by my house that I surf a lot and I found it to be pretty similar here."

Kaua'i's Alex Smith also won his heat in the Boys under 16 division. Tyler Newton and Dylan Melamed lost in the second round, but both rebounded with victories in the consolation bracket (each division features a double-elimination format).

In the Boys under 18 division, four Hawai'i surfers advanced to the third round of the winners' bracket: Casey Brown, Kyle Ramey, Torrey Meister and Nathan Rex.

Brown and Ramey won their respective second-round heats, and Meister and Rex placed second (the top two from each heat advance).

In the Girls under 18 division, Bethany Hamilton, Lani Hunter, Monica Byrne-Wickey and Lipoa Kahaleuahi advanced to the third round of the winners' bracket.

Hamilton and Hunter won their respective second-round heats, and Byrne-Wickey and Kahaleuahi placed second.

The contest is considered the world championship for surfers under 18. Hawai'i is the defending team champion of the event.

FULLER AND BRUCE IRONS START STRONG IN TAHITI

Kaua'i surfers Danny Fuller and Bruce Irons won first-round heats in the men's division of the Billabong Pro Tahiti yesterday.

The opening day of the contest was completed in 3- to 5-foot waves at Teahupoo, Tahiti.

Fuller qualified for the contest through a trials event, and he had the highest score of the first round yesterday. He received scores of 9.17 and 7.17 on his two best waves for a total of 16.34.

"I've been to Tahiti 14 times I love this wave," he said. "If it gets bigger, I'll be comfortable out here."

Irons scored a 9.0 for his best wave in his first-round victory. As first-round winners, Fuller and Irons received byes in the second round.

Hawai'i surfers Andy Irons, Fred Patacchia Jr., Roy Powers and Pancho Sullivan did not win in the first round, and will have to surf in the elimination second round. Andy Irons, a three-time former world champion, received a costly interference penalty in his first-round loss.