Costa sees endless summer of surfing
By Dayton Morinaga
Advertiser Staff Writer
At this rate, Matty Costa could be a national surfing champion by the end of summer.
Costa continued his sizzling pre-summer by winning the prestigious junior men's division at the Local Motion Surf Into Summer contest yesterday.
The three-day contest — which is considered the kickoff event for the summer surfing season — concluded in 2- to 3-foot waves at Ala Moana Bowls yesterday.
"The best contests are at Bowls, so any time you can win over here, it's a big thing," said Costa, who is a junior at Elite Element Academy.
It was Costa's second victory at Ala Moana Bowls in May. He also prevailed at the state amateur championships earlier in the month.
Both times, he edged friend Ezekiel Lau in the final.
"Not to sound cocky, but I kind of knew it would come down to me and Zeke," Costa said. "I knew it was close, and it could go to either one of us."
In the final tally, Costa's two best waves received a total score of 14.17 to top Lau's score of 13.83.
The junior men's division is for surfers age 15 to 17, many of them on the verge of becoming professionals.
Costa, who resides in 'Ewa, is hoping to take the momentum to two separate national championship events in California in June. A strong performance in those events could earn him a coveted sponsorship from a surfing company.
"My plan for the summer is to go to California and hopefully do good so I can find a sponsor," he said.
Costa said he is also planning to take a surfing trip to Bali, Indonesia, in July. "It's going to be an exciting summer," he said.
The Surf Into Summer contest featured 13 divisions, and more than 270 surfers, making it the largest amateur surfing event in the state.
"Ala Moana Bowls is the gem of the south shore, so just to get a chance to surf these waves in a contest is worth it," said Local Motion representative Tommy Asing. "And this is more of a family event. It's not about getting points, or looking at your ratings; this contest is more about having fun and beating your friends for bragging rights."
The Moniz family had three brothers — Isaiah, Joshua and Seth — in yesterday's finals.
Seth won the boys division (ages 12 to 14) and scored the best wave of the day — a 9.5 out of 10 for a long barrel ride.
"Somehow that set came to me and I got it and went for the barrel," said Seth, 12. "I was stoked I got it."
The Moniz family often surfs together at Ala Moana Bowls on non-contest days, when the crowds make it difficult to catch waves. Yesterday's finals featured six surfers per heat.
"It's super-fun with only six guys out," Seth said. "That's why I like this contest."
Another successful family performance came from the Wong brothers: Derek won the men's shortboard surfing division; Geoff won the open men's longboard surfing division.
Junior men: 1, Trevor Kam. 2, Keanu Cazimero. 3, Kahekili Labatte. 4, Job Oba. 5, Joey Muller. 6, Ulu Delima. Men: 1, Kurt Sasaoka. 2, Davin Alexander. 3, Daniel Dorn. 4, Jason Oh. 5, Kenneth Yonemura. 6, Landon Gaspar.
Menehune: 1, Noa Mizuno. 2, Finn McGill. 3, Kameron Dowis. 4, Devin Brueggemann. 5, Barron Mamiya. 6, George Leong-Titcomb. Boys: 1, Seth Moniz. 2, Austin Vicente. 3, Josh Moniz. 4, Eala Stewart. 5, Kala Grace. 6, Dane Rust. Junior men: 1, Matty Costa. 2, Ezekiel Lau. 3, Dylan Kowalski. 4, Kaito Kino. 5, Isaiah Moniz. 6, Makai McNamara. Men: 1, Derek Wong. 2, Ian Soutar. 3, Makani Ciotti. 4, Vance Smith. 5, Davin Jaime. 6, Kainoa Haas. Masters: 1, Gregg Nakamura. 2, Thomas Spear. 3, Hoku Hookano. 4, Nathan Chan. 5, Rio Flores. 6, Hop Tong Smith. Senior men: 1, Scott Shimoda. 2, Edrick Baldwin. 3, Dennis Garcia. 4, Chet Moleta. 5, Richard Tom. 6, Mike Akima. Girls: 1, Dax McGill. 2, Alisha Gonsalves. 3, Jenna Forti. 4, Malia Mizuno 5, Tia Blanco. 6, Nicole Brueggemann. Women: 1, Izumi Baldwin. 2, Renee Watkins. 3, Natalie Burns. 4, Michelle Watkins. 5, Yuko Kawamae. 6, Virginia Fajardo. Industry employees: 1, Mike Latronic. 2, Janner Asuncion. 3, Kaipo Guerrero. 4, Ed Fernandez. 5, Keola Hayes. 6, Maki Yamamoto.
Open men: 1, Geoff Wong. 2, Nelson Ahina. 3, Daniel Johnasen. 4, Erik Funakoshi. 5, Daniel Stein. 6, Kela Domanay. Open women: 1, Angela Vernon. 2, Ashley Ahina. 3, Heather Faustin. 4, Lindsay McGill. 5, Sierra Ondo. 6, Kylie Nagy.