Geeks And Groms Froth At Bowls

Kauai's Jesse Merle Jones had one of the highest heat scores of the day at the Ala Moana Bowls Sponsor Me 2* WQS. Photo: Willi

After racking up over 16 points, Kauai's Jesse Merle Jones had one of the highest heat scores of the day at the Ala Moana Bowls Sponsor Me 2* WQS. Photo: Willi

Day 1 of the Sponsor Me Hawaii Ala Moana Bowls 2-Star World Qualifying Series Event

History was made yesterday at the Sponsor Me Hawaii Ala Moana Bowls 2-Star World Qualifying Series Event. This event knocked out the first two rounds of competition with chest- to- shoulder waves, high performance surfing and mind-boggling technology.

The Ala Moana action was broadcast live in high definition on, Oceanic Time Warner Cable Channel 250 and 150, as well as streamed live on the iPad, iPhone and Droid. This was a first for the surfing says Ubiquity Broadcasting CEO and part owner of Sponsor Me Chris Carmichael.

"I think it broadens [the sport of surfing's] demographic and distribution of the sport," said Carmichael of the live broadcast. "We did the world's first action sports IT backhaul– what that means is that in a remote area you have no fiber drop, no microwave dishes or satellites. We used our compression technology and we backhauled the content to the broadcasters synched the sound up and the rest is history."

Ala Moana Bowls Sponsor Me

If you're a techie or computer geek then that last quote probably gave you a boner. But for the average surfer or stoner, all it means is that the live broadcast gave contestants more exposure than an American Idol finalist. In fact, Carmichael says the increased number of possible viewers aligns with Sponsor Me's mission.

"We want to find the up and coming athletes in the world, where American Idol meets X-Games," said Carmichael. "You get kids from under served markets. Maybe a kid has the ability, but he doesn't have the money to pay for a surfboard or a plane flight to get anywhere. We want to back those kids and get their ability to another level."

Sponsor Me backed Taoa Pou, 13, of Molokai and Ian Bowman, 18, of Hilo on the Big Island of Hawaii for the Ala Moana 2-star QS event. Both unsponsored, underground groms received free entry to this event and a mentoring day last week Friday with Sunny Garcia, Makuakai Rothman, Pancho Sullivan and Myles Padaca.

Taoa Pou, Ian Bowman, and Myles Padaca. Photo: Willi

Taoa Pou, Ian Bowman, and Myles Padaca. Photo: Willi

The younger Pou didn't make it out of the second round, but Bowman straight up dominated his heat thanks to a well-planned strategy from Progressive Surfing's Myles Padaca and high tide push.

"Ian really stuck to the game plan, went out there and stayed super busy. Got a couple of scores under his belt early and chipped away at those scores and replaced them with better scores. That was the game plan going into it," said Padaca about Bowman's heat. "It feels good [watching one of your kids that you coach make his heat] because maybe some of things I said he got and he can use those as tools for the next event."

Bowman surfed smart on his backhand, getting two, quick scoring rides under his belt in the beginning of the heat. On his way back out to the lineup, grabbed a wide-breaking set wave on the inside corner. Then backed it up with another set wave.

Bowman admits that he has a love-hate relationship with Bowls, but knows that each heat in the Sponsor Me Hawaii Ala Moana Bowls 2-star WQS event is a confidence booster.

"Every heat I make, I get more and more confident, more and more stoked and it makes me more and more dangerous as a wildcard," said Bowman.

Competition will most likely resume next week Tuesday as a new south swell is forecasted to hit Honolulu's shores. Look for Bowman, Padaca and the remaining surfers to light up Ala Moana Bowls on the final day of the event.—Daniel Ikaika Ito

Day 1 Results:
All surfers from Hawaii unless noted otherwise.
Surfers listed in order of placing, 1st through 4th.
Each score out of a total of 20.

Round of 112 (Round 1)
H1: Kalani Robb 16.0; Barak Maor 14.25; Sion Milosky 7.0; Shaun Paulson 2.25
H2: Austin Vicente 10.0; Kaupena Miranda 6.75; Kalani Chapman 5.1; Christopher Latronic 3.85
H3: Evan Valiere 10.5; Isaac Stant 10.25; Rio Flores 9.2; Micah Moniz 6.55
H4: Alex Smith 11.5; Keoki Young 9.0; Cameron Carmichael 5.1; Adam Crawford 2.5
H5: Kai Barger 14.5; Greg Nakamura 13.75; Mike Akima 10.25; Kelani Keuwe 5.65
H6: Jason Magallanes 8.35; Cheyne Willis 4.5; Alen Schyler 3.25; Jason Frederico
H7: Jesse Merle-Jones 14.0; Derek Ho 10.5; Josh Rex 0.0
H8: Dustin Cuizon 16.75; John Irons 13.5; Albert Conone 5.25; Brian Frederico 4.35

Round of 96: (Round 2)
H1: Kalani Robb 12.0; Larry Rios 8.65; Mikey Bruneau 7.6; Nakoa DeCoite 4.75
H2: Zachary Arreola 11.15; Barak Maor 10.0; Rico Jimenez 6.95; Richard Sheppard 2.35
H3: Austin Vicente 11.75; Drew Pringle 9.5; Chris Pruett 6.1; David Giddings 0.0
H4: Makani Ciotti 9.5; Makai McNamara 8.5; Kaupena Miranda 6.05; Koalaukani 4.5
H5: Evan Valiere 15.0; Theo Niarchos 10.75; Robert Petterson 9.75; Taoa Pou 6.6
H6: Kawai Lindo; Isaac Stant 6.35; Scott Fountain 6.25; Dwayne Scharsch 5.5
H7: Alex Smith 14.75; Edrick Baldwin 9.35; Sai Smiley 8.25; Robert Hennessy 8.0
H8: Davin Torres-Jaime 12.25; Keoki Young 7.75; Stephen Koehne 6.75; John Turner 6.75
H9: Kai Barger 14.75; Lance Groover 12.25; Barrett Chatson 12.0; Masaijah Lani 7.0
H10: Kawehi Ponce 12.5; Greg Nakamura 10.25; Macy Mullen 9.85; Gavin Garcia 2.75
H11: Matt Meola 14.25; Jason Magallanes 13.0; Greg Apo 6.5; Chris Macres (USA) 3.8
H12: Ian Bowman 11.75; Kevin Kapsky 11.4; Cheyne Willis 4.25; Nelson Sadoy 2.55
H13: Jesse Merle-Jones 16.15; Ha'a Aikau 9.85; Billy Choi 7.85; Koa Rothman 5.25
H14: Derek Ho 13.0; Jamie O'Brien 10.13; Tamayo Perry 6.35; Zotan Torkos 4.15
H15: Randall Paulson 16.65; Dustin Cuizon 16.5; Derek Wong 12.85; Doug Silva 11.5
H16: Keoni Nozaki 8.45; Jeremy Doudt 8.1; John Irons 6.5; David Guerrero 4.75