HUNTINGTON BEACH, California (Thursday, July 1, 2010) – The 2010 NSSA National Championships saw some of the country's finest up-and-coming talent battle through Open Men's Round 1 at South Huntington Beach Pier today, with East Coaster Evan Geiselman, 16, Conner Coffin, 16, and Luke Davis, 17, posting some of the day's highest scores. Following open men's competition was Open Boys Round 1 which was followed by Open Juniors Round 2 to conclude the day's proceedings.
Geiselman capitalized on a rare wedgy lefthander during his high-tide heat to match the highest single-wave score of the Open Men's Round 1 competition by combining progressive tail drifting turns and forehand carves to earn an 8 out of 10 while convincingly taking out his first heat win of the event.
"It was a really slow heat," Geiselman said. "I just wanted to surf and have fun because the waves have been pumping. It's a bummer that the waves were slow, but I just wanted to make it through that heat and I can't wait to surf again tomorrow."
Geiselman, who is fresh off of a major win at the Surfing America USA Championships and currently leading the ASP North America Pro Junior Series ratings, has been in top form this year and is hoping to post another impressive result at this year's NSSA Nationals.
"This has definitely been my best year ever," Geiselman said. "It's a little dream run that I'm having right now and I'm just trying to take it as it comes. I'm having a blast with it and just trying to surf my brains out and it's all just falling into place."
Coffin got off to a slow start in his Open Men's Round 1 heat, but slowly built momentum before unearthing an impressive 8-point ride with powerful forehand gouges on a righthand set-wave to clinch his heat victory.
"I was happy to get that one 8-point ride," Coffin said. "It was slow out there. It's been inconsistent, but I got that one good one. I probably got that score because it had been such a slow heat and it was a set wave. I didn't feel like I did anything too special, just a few carves and a little tailslide thing on the inside."
The Santa Barbara native had a tough run at the Surfing America USA Championships, but is hoping for a better performance at the NSSA National Championships.
"I'd definitely like to get a good result here," Coffin said. "I kind of had a shocker at that Lowers contest, so I'm looking to try and redeem myself. More than anything, I'm just looking to have fun. The waves are fun and I'm just going to cruise."
Davis was another early round standout, capitalizing on the early morning incoming-tide to punt a solid air-reverse while nabbing one of the highest combined heat totals of Open Men's Round 1.
"There are a couple of wedges," Davis said. "The south swell is bigger than yesterday, so we're lucky to have fun waves like this."
Davis is currently making the adjustment to the NSSA Nationals' new location of South Huntington Beach Pier and hopes that the event title comes down to a battle of progressive surfing wizardry instead of competitive strategy.
"The contest has been at Lowers every year, so this year is a lot different," Davis said. "It's a lot easier to sit on people and play tactical games, but hopefully it comes down to everyone ripping and doing airs."
Also posting an impressive Open Men's Round 1 performance was 2009 Open Juniors National Champion Ezekiel Lau.
Leading Round 1 of Open Boy's competition was young Hawaiian Imai Devault, who posted the day's highest single wave score of a 9 out of 10, while fellow Hawaiian Seth Moniz clinched the day's highest heat total, a 15.50 out of 20.
Parker Coffin, who is the younger brother of Open Men's standout Conner Coffin, was the leading scorer in Open Junior's Round 2 with an impressive 8.75 single wave score to take his heat win.
Surfline, official surf forecasters for the 2010 NSSA Nationals are calling for an easing south swell for tomorrow, June 2, while the northwest windswell is expected to hold throughout the day to provide contestable two-to-three foot surf. Winds are expected to be calm in the morning and moderate out of the west by the afternoon.
To watch all of the LIVE NSSA Nationals action watch the webcast presented by Nike 6.0 at nssalive.com starting tomorrow at 7am local time with Open Men's, Open Women's Open Juniors and Open Boy's divisions all surfing tomorrow.