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SANTIAGO LEADS SURF THE BASIN

The sixth annual Surf the Basin kicked off Saturday morning with more than 40 competitors looking to take the titles in four different categories: juniors division, body board division, long board division, and the short board division.

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By Asha Marie Robles

The sixth annual Surf the Basin kicked off Saturday morning with more than 40 competitors looking to take the titles in four different categories: juniors division, body board division, long board division, and the short board division. Even with bipolar weather conditions throughout the day the event could not have been more of a success. Finishing strong was none other than Guam surfer Joeito Santiago, who took first place in not one, but two divisions in Saturday’s competition.

“I’ve been surfing since I was in pampers,” joked Santiago, as he described how grateful he is to still be able to surf and win events in competitions with the raise of surfers in the younger generation.

Taking first place for the juniors division by just a few points by the judges was Jared Gogue, followed by Napu Taimanglo for second, Michael Murphy in third, and Misaki Cramer taking fourth. The junior division, which begun with six contestants, was divided into two groups of three. The winner of each heat, Gogue and Taimanglo, automatically advanced into the finals while the four others battled it out to get the chance to advance as well, which were Cramer and Murphy.

“I’m glad to have won the junior division. I love competing against people my age because we are all friends and it’s just a good overall atmosphere when you compete with people you enjoy being around”, stated Gogue, who also said he enjoys competitions where he can hangout with all the surfers on Guam and do what he loves to do, surf with friends.

One of the more populated events of Saturday’s competition was the body board division where 17 brave souls clashed together at the chance to claim first place. However, body boarder Brian Cruz out-surfed the rest to be named champion for this years’ event. Cruz has been surfing in these competitions for so long that even he forgot how many events he has competed in.

“Its great that I won but I don’t feel any different, maybe I’m just humble, but it’s nothing new”, Cruz said.

Coming in second for the body boarding division was BJ Rolinski, followed by John Barber in third and Carl Dela Cruz in fourth.

John Barber drops back into a wave after carve on the top.  (photo by Kyle Twardowski)

John Barber drops back into a wave after carve on the top. (photo by Kyle Twardowski)

In one of the more laid back events, seven competitors battled it out in an exciting long board battle to vie for the title as champion of the long boarders. Santiago was able to come out on top with the win over Kenny Pier by just a few points. “I feel good! I thought I got second for long boarding but I guess wooed the judges over Kenny”, he laughed. Pier, who was the oldest of the competition, couldn’t have been more proud of his performance. “I’m stoked to be the oldest person in the whole competition and still grab second place in the long board division, it’s awesome.”

Coming in third for the long board division was Robby Alexander with Addison Moyler taking fourth.

In the competitions most exciting event, the short board division, Santiago went head-to-head with Shane Pier in the fight for the first place title. In the end, it was Santiago who came out on top once again.

“In the short board division I thought for sure Shane had it because he was really ripping out there. So I just thought to myself no problem I’ll settle for second place, so I was definitely surprised”, stated Santiago.

Pier ended the battle in second place, followed by junior division champ Gogue in third, and second place junior division winner Taimanglo in fourth.

Young gun surfer Gogue stated, “Taking third in the short board division was really cool, the guys are a lot older than me and to be able to keep up with them is awesome.” And adds that he is just taking it day by day in becoming a better surfer, “I guess that’s what makes you a better surfer, keep doing what you love and you’ll excel in it.”

Junior surfing

1st place: Jared Brandon Gogue

2nd place: Napu Taimanglo

3rd place: Michael Murphy

4th place: Misaki Cramer

Long board surfing

1st place: Joeito Santiago

2nd place: Kenny Pier

3rd place: Robby Alexander

4th place: Addison Moyer

Body boarding

1st place: Brian Cruz

2nd place: B.J. Rolinski

3rd place: John Barber

4th place: Carl Dela Cruz

Short board surfing

1st place: Joeito Santiago

2nd place: Shane Pier

3rd place: Jared Brandon Gogue

4th place: Napu Taimanglo

 

PHOTO GALLERY BROUGHT TO YOU BY:

Wil Castro

One of few female competitors drops into a wave during heat one of the body boarding section.  (photo by Kyle Twardowski)

One of few female competitors drops into a wave during heat one of the body boarding section. (photo by Kyle Twardowski)

Frank Taitano drops into one of many massive waves that were presented at Surf the Basin 6 held at the Agana Boat Basin.  (photo by Kyle Twardowski)

Frank Taitano drops into one of many massive waves that were presented at Surf the Basin 6 held at the Agana Boat Basin. (photo by Kyle Twardowski)

Carl Dela Cruz kneels into a wave during heat two of the body boarding section.  (photo by Kyle Twardowski)

Carl Dela Cruz kneels into a wave during heat two of the body boarding section. (photo by Kyle Twardowski)

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QUICK HITS

Shawn Bamba won the Arizona state wrestling championship while siblings Jussiah and Justyn took third place in their divisions at state.
Shawn (12th) won the 150-lb division while Jussiah (11th) took bronze in the 120-lb class and Justyn (9th) took bronze in the 106-lb category.
All three were born on Guam before moving to Surprise, Arizona in 2014, where they all picked up wrestling in 2016.
Their parents are Justin and Shannon Bamba from Pago Bay.
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Christian Delos Santos, son of Richard Delos Santos (Barrigada) and Norma Larimer Delos Santos (Dededo), won the Kentucky High School Athletic Association wrestling state championship in the 113-lb weight class.
His sister Naiya took 3rd place in the 100-lb girls division.

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