Haakenson: Bartovich, Mel shine at NSSA regional

The National Scholastic Surfing Assn. West Coast Regional Championships had some fun surf last weekend on the south side of the Huntington Beach Pier, and a couple of local surfers came up big.

Tony Bartovich, 18 and a senior at Huntington Beach High, won the Longboard division, and 12-year-old John Mel of Newport Beach won the Open Boys.

A couple of San Clemente surfers came close to claiming championships, as well. Colt Ward came in second place in the Open Men's, falling short of champion Hiroto Oohara of Japan, 16.34 to 11.90 in the final four-man heat, which scored each surfer's two best rides.

In the Open Juniors, Griffin Colapinto scored 11.94 in his two rides, finishing second behind Santa Cruz's Nic Hdez, who scored 12.74.

Other champions included: Dagan Stagg of Carlsbad (Open Mini-Groms), Kulia Doherty of Rancho Santa Fe (Open Women), Frankie Harrer of Malibu (Open Girls), Taylor Mathiesen of Carlsbad (Explorer Men's), Thelen Worrell of Malibu (Explorer Juniors), Colapinto (Explorer Boys), Mel (Explorer Menehuene), Nick Marshall of Encinitas (Explorer Mini Groms), Doherty (Explorer Women's), Harrer (Explorer Girls), Rick Takahashi of San Diego (Explorer Masters), Takahashi (Explorer Seniors), Mike Glevy of San Diego (Explorer Super Seniors), Rick "Rockin' Fig" Fignetti of Huntington Beach (Explorer Duke), Austin Sonnier of San Diego (Explorer Longboard) and Taylor Clark of Encintas (West Coast Airshow).

The Open divisions are open to students only, while the Explorer divisions have different age categories and include some non-student categories.

The NSSA West Coast Regional Championships were the fifth event on the 2012 NSSA Championship Series. The final event is the NSSA National Interscholastic Championships at Salt Creek from June 16-18 and the H.B. Pier from June 26 to July 3.


The Surfing Heritage Foundation has announced its next scheduled exhibit at its museum in San Clemente.

The exhibit, "The Happy Beach Bums from San Onofre," will be on display from Aug. 5 to Oct. 28.

The recent discovery of a collection of 150 black and white Polaroid photographs taken of families at San Onofre in the early 1960s is the basis for the exhibit.

During the early- to mid-1960s, Don Davis, an avid surfer and Belmont Shore architect, purchased a Polaroid camera and began using it to chronicle San Onofre surf families.

He mounted each photograph on lined paper and recorded each subject's name, address, phone number and occupation, with the goal of creating a future publication. His album of photographs documents the unique culture that has revolved around San Onofre State Beach, as well as the burgeoning California surf culture.

The exhibition will include a print-on-demand book that reproduces the original album with essays by Steve Pezman (co-founder of The Surfer's Journal) and John Upton (professor, photographer, curator, and co-author of the college textbook Photograph). The exhibit curator is Steve Wilkings.

The current exhibit at the Surfing Heritage Foundation's museum is called "The Innovations of Hobie," which is an overview of the contributions that Hobie Alter made to surfing, skating, sailing, sunglasses and gliders.


John John Florence of Hawaii won the Billabong Rio Pro in Brazil last week in the third event of the 10-event Assn. of Surfing Professional World Championship Tour.

Defending world champion Kelly Slater did not compete because of an injury and fell to eighth place in the overall points standings. Joel Parkinson, who placed second in Rio, now leads the points standings, ahead of second-place Mick Fanning and third-place Josh Kerr.

Huntington Beach's Brett Simpson placed 13th in Rio and is in 15th place in the WCT points standings.

The next WCT event will be in Fiji from June 3-15.


The Huntington Beach High School surf team held its annual banquet last week, and during the festivities two student-athletes received $1,000 scholarships from Roxy and Quiksilver.

The scholarship winners were Jack Boyes, who will attend Point Loma University, and Jillian Torrence, who will attend San Francisco State.


If there were any doubts about Newport Beach's Andrew Doheny hitting the big time, doubt no more. Doheny will be on the cover of Surfing Magazine's July issue.

Check out the cover photo of Doheny in action in the Indian Ocean at http://www.tinyurl.com/andrewdoheny..

JOE HAAKENSON is an Orange County-based sports writer and editor. He may be reached at joe@juvecreative.com.

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