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Tough conditions lead to powerful surfing

By Jim Shilander

Despite rain and high surf, plenty of young surfers made their way to the San Clemente Pier for the annual Groms Rule surf contest.

Organizer Jack Sutter said the conditions, while challenging, were perfect for the event. There was also the expansion of the field, allowing more young women, up to 17 years old, to be a part of the event.

Groms of all ages braved challenging conditions Sunday at the San Clemente Pier. Photo: Eric Heinz
Groms of all ages braved challenging conditions Sunday at the San Clemente Pier. Photo: Eric Heinz

“The kids found it a challenge and just hit it,” Sutter said. “It went quite well. Everyone was really happy.”

The bigger surf was especially perfect for younger surfers who were pushed out by their parents, Sutter said. Although, there was one case where the surf may have been too much of a good thing.

One young surfer, Jett Rocket Prefontaine, got pushed into a six-foot bomb, Sutter said, leading to a wipe out where Jett’s board hit him in the head. He was taken to the hospital for to have the wound closed and then came back to the beach to let people know he was OK. Sutter gave him a special award for the toughness he displayed.

Groms Rule Winners

Boys 10U

1. Dane Matson
2. Ryder Fish
3. Cannon Montoya
4. Azure Trujillo
5. Nate Pierce
6. Kai Cassano

Boys 11-14

1. Hagan Johnson
2. Luca Aza
3. Max Beach
4. Elijah Tomlinson
5. Hayden Millerick
6. Kai Burleson

Girls 12U

1. Alaina Heater
2. Emily Racine
3. Makenna Doan
4. Savannah Batchelor

5. Reese Hartnett
6. Julia Guild

Girls 13-17

1. Bethany Zelasko
2. Alaina Heater
3. Chloe Bedford


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comments (1)

  • Thank You Jack Sutter and the city of San Clemente for an amazing event and the special award for Jett. ( It made his day). Also a special thanks to the Lifeguards of San Clemente who made our son feel safe and took care of him before his trip to the ER. Jett’s staples come out next week and he can’t wait to hit the waves again.

    As Jett said “I’m only 6- and I’ll be back!” We look forward to next year.

    and Jack if you’re ever at a WSA event we’ll see you there!!!!

    Homer, Dani & Jett Rocket Prefontaine

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