16 Remain at US Open of Surfing

Eight more heats were run in improving surf at Huntington Beach today on the fifth consecutive day of competition at the US Open of Surfing. The man-on-man elimination round of 24 sent eight surfers packing, setting up some big matchups in the forthcoming round.

The cinderella story of the event thus far has been young Hawaiian Keanu Asing, who fought his way from a trials (a 32-man contest in itself) to one of the 4 trials wildcard spots, and now a weekend battle against close friend and fellow Hawaiian John John Florence for a spot in the quarterfinals.

While the result wouldn’t mean much to John John who currently sits comfortably at number one in the world, a quarterfinal or better finish could significantly boost Keanu’s 58th ranking and turn his year into a run at the tour. Keanu has been doing double duty, also making the quarterfinals in 4-star Pro Jr event which has been running alongside the Open Men’s competition.

Florence isn’t the only one facing a moral dilemma. Dane Reynolds is also facing one in heat 4, as he’ll be facing his best buddy Nathaniel Curran, who at 43rd in the rankings needs this result a whole hell of a lot more than Reynolds does. Dane has shown a drive and focus during this event thus far, a side we rarely saw from him during his brief tenure on tour. Will it last when it means bumming out his buddy?

QF 1:
Malia Manuel (HAW) 13.20 def. Courtney Conlogue (USA) 12.93
QF 2: Lakey Peterson (USA) 19.76 def. Sage Erickson (USA) 13.76
QF 3: Sally Fitzgibbons (AUS) 16.60 def. Coco Ho (HAW) 10.80
QF 4: Carissa Moore (HAW) 15.10 def. Paige Hareb (NZL) 8.60

Heat 1:
Tim Reyes (USA) 14.33 def. Tanner Gudauskas (USA) 11.16
Heat 2: Kai Otton (AUS) 13.00 def. Jay Thompson (AUS) 12.93
Heat 3: Kelly Slater (USA) 15.37 def. Stu Kennedy (AUS) 9.93
Heat 4: Dane Reynolds (USA) 13.94 def. Yadin Nicol (AUS) 7.36
Heat 5: Granger Larsen (HAW) 14.76 def. Alex Ribeiro (BRA)11.84
Heat 6: Nat Young (USA) 13.17 def. Mitchel Coleborn (AUS) 11.04
Heat 7: Keanu Asing (HAW) 13.04 def. Patrick Gudauskas (USA) 12.80
Heat 8: Brett Simpson (USA) 13.73 def. Lincoln Taylor (AUS) 10.67