The Mira Costa surfing team won league and finished near the top at state.
They finished with a 5-0 record, including beating 17-time national champion Huntington Beach High School. They did it in a year where the surf was not quite up to par.
“It was a miserable fall and winter for surf with just a few magical days thrown in,” said Mira Costa head coach Tracy Geller.
This year’s team rose to the occasion.
“Our team is thicker than ever in talent with four freshmen who walked right into a starting role on varsity and our top surfers are just getting better,” Geller said.
It started with South Bay Scholastic Surfing Association where they clinched the title with a win over El Segundo.
“We had our best finish ever at the NSSA State Championships at Sea Side Reef taking fifth in varsity and second in junior varsity behind San Clemente who won both divisions,” Geller said.
The Mustangs dominated in league except for a close contest with rival Redondo Union. It ended when they clinched league with a 96-49 victory over El Segundo.
Mira Costa defeated Peninsula 101-45 on Oct. 25 at 26th Street in Manhattan Beach to start the season and followed that up with a win over South Torrance 98-49 on Nov. 15 in Manhattan Beach.
They finished out the year with an 86-61 victory over Palos Verdes at Torrance Beach on Dec. 15 to improve to 3-0.
Then on Feb. 28, Mira Costa beat rival Redondo Union 77-70 at 26th Street in Manhattan Beach.
They clinched the league title of the Champions Division on March 7 with a 96-49 win over El Segundo at 38th Street in Manhattan Beach to finish 5-0.
Redondo Union finished in second with a 3-2 mark and Palos Verdes was third at 3-2.
Mira Costa’s Alex Fry, Chad Parks, Zach Rosenberg, Megan Seth, Sophia Arky and Ryan Ulrich also won the Team Challenge on Jan. 27.
Ulrich, team captain, said it’s been his goal to compete on the surf team since he was 7 years old. “It has been the best experience of high school and I will really miss the team and coaches when I go to college,” he said.
The team is prepping for their next challenge which is the NSSA Nationals in mid-June.
Breaking down their victory over El Segundo, the following happened on the water.
Chad Parks, Nick Cerofeci and Brendan Griffin paddled out in the first short board heat and finished in first, fourth and third to make the score 13-7.
Zach Rosenberg, Alex Iantuono and Lucas Horta went 1-2-3 for a perfect heat and a 15-6 advantage widening the score to 28-13.
In the third heat, Megan Seth, Kyra Williams and Sophia Arky paddled out for the last short board heat and go 1-3-2 for a perfect 15-point heat increasing the lead to 43-19.
At the midway point, Cash Cherry, Cole Fishman and Ryan Ulrich took to the water on the longboards and went 3-5-1, winning their heat 12 to 8 for a 55-27 advantage, clinching the victory over the Eagles.
In the final heats, beginning with Megan Seth, Sophia Arky and Kenna Hawkes on longboards, they went 1-2-3 with Hawkes also taking first in the sit-down division. Another perfect 15-point heat win pushed the score up to 70-33.
Down in the next-to-last heat, Joey Samuelian, Braden Di Mauro and Daniel Boos brought it back to short boards and went 2-3-4, winning their heat 12 – 9, to bring the score to 82-42.
The final heat saw Kelly Murphy, Billy Atkinson and Coco Vergnolle compete on short boards, where they went 2-1-4, winning their heat 14 – 7.
This year’s team included: Alex Fry, Alex Iantuono, Ashley Weaver, Ashton Bark, Barron Regan, Beck Cherry, Billy Akinson, Braden DiMauro, Carly Komick, Cash Cherry, Chloe Osborn, Cole Fishman, Daniel Boos, Emily Eddins, Ethan Mibu, Hudson Fredriksz, Jake Rosenberg, Jesse Purcell, Joey Samuelian, Kelly Murphy, Lauren Friedrich, Leo Schleyer, Linnae Hartzel, Lucas Horta, Lucas Meyer, Max Weller, McKenna Hawkes, Megan Seth, Nick Cerofeci, Olin Meyer, Peri Nathan, Ryan Manick, Ryan Ulrich, Ryland Hart, Sam Roskin, Sammy Parsley, Saul Droutman, Shane Moseley, Sophia Arky, Teya Hartzel, Trey Mahan, Tyler Smith, Will Obermeyer, Zach Rosenberg and Zach Zawacki.
Coaches were Geller and Mike Quinn.
Surfer Friedrich summed up the experience: “The team this season has been amazing and having an undefeated year is a great way to close out senior year.”