Talent depth delivers

Warren HatelyAugusta Margaret River Times
Ruby Berry.
Camera IconRuby Berry.

Margaret River Senior High School surfers have surprised no one by smashing their way to the top at the weekend’s State school surfing titles final event.

Teams from 20 regional and metropolitan schools fought through tricky and windswept waves at Trigg Beach, with MRSHS crowned State champs for the 15th consecutive time.

“Margaret River’s depth of talent was on display as they ran away with five of the eight divisional wins,” Surfing WA events manager Justin Majeks said.

MRSHS dominated the hotly contested senior boys’ comp with an inspired performance by Gracetown duo Jed Gradisen and George Simpson.

Despite the best efforts of their classmates Solomon Pogue-Englert and Jack Mitchell,an exciting and powerful display by Gradisen and Simpson gave them the victory.

“We’ve had a blast despite the conditions this arvo. It’s been an awesome day,” Simpson said.

“Big thanks to Mr Sluiter and Mr McTaggart for all their hard work and coaching they provide the whole team.”

MRSHS also claimed wins in the junior boys’ and girls’ surfing divisions, as well as the junior boys’ and girls’ bodyboarding.

Zali Hewson and Willow Hardy from Margaret River SHS are the reigning Junior Girls’ Surfing National Champions and they showed they still had the goods with a flashy performance in marginal afternoon waves.

Hewson and Hardy took down schoolmates Ruby Berry and Lilli Cox in the final.

“These events are always so much fun,” Hewson said.

“Thanks to all the girls who competed today and pushed Willow and I all the way.”

Brock Launders and Macklin Flynn kept the momentum rolling, winning the junior boys’ surfing division from Otis North and Maverick Wilson from St Mary Mackillop College in Busselton.

In one of the best match-ups of the day, all four surfers performed well and scored highly.

“Otis and Maverick both surf so well, we weren’t taking them lightly,” Launders said.

“It’s been a great day and well done to my teammate Macklin on helping us secure the win.”

The finals was the culmination of 10 regional events throughout WA since surfing resumed after COVID-19 restrictions eased.

While MRSHS was favoured to claim the top school trophy, the senior girls’ prize went to Nagle Catholic College in a close contest.

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