KwaZulu-Natal Central claimed the coveted Freedom Cup at the 2014 Hurley SA Junior Champs which was completed in 3 to 4 foot picture perfect offshore waves at the Lower Point in Jeffreys Bay yesterday.
The KZNC team also clinched two of the six individual titles at stake and provided eight of the 24 finalists, earning 29 450 points to finish well ahead of hosts Eastern Province (26 612) and third placed Western Province (26 202).
JBay local Kai Woolf successfully defended her respective U13 national title while Michael Monk (Border) clinched the U17 Boys crown, Adin Masencamp (Boland) added the U15 Boys title to his U13 win last year, Sophie Bell (KZNC) took the U15 Girls crown and Max Elkington (WP) is the 2014 SA champion in the U13 Boys division.
The U17 Girls final started with Anoush Zakarian (Bol) posting an excellent score of 8.50 out of 10, leaving her three opponents needing to play catch up.
Hogg steadily built her two wave heat total with long rides, eventually overtaking Zakarian with less than 10 minutes remaining and holding onto the lead for back-to-back titles.
Ntando Msibi from the SA Development Academy team was first out of the blocks in the see-saw U17 Boys final, but defending champion and Jeffreys Bay local Matthew McGillivray (EP) took the lead with a series of massive manoeuvres on his first ride.
Monk weighed in with two great waves to overtake McGillivray who attempted a huge, high risk aerial that he did make and Monk clinched the title to the enthusiastic delight of his Border team mates on the beach.
Sophie Bell (KZNC) dominated the U15 Girls final by catching the best waves and performing better manoeuvres than her peers to finish well ahead of runner-up Anna Jellema-Butler (WP).
The lead changed hands between the final four competitors in the tightly contested U15 Boys with Adin Masencamp narrowly securing the title with just two minutes remaining and less than one point separating first place from fourth.
Kai Woolf (EP) was the standout throughout the U13 Girls division and finished well clear of Gabi Lailvaux (KZNC) who displayed huge improvement to grab second place.
Saxton Randall (KZNC) started the U13 Boys final with a great ride but was hauled in, first by JBay local Angelo Faulkner (EP) and then by eventual 2014 champion Max Elkington (WP), who rode to victory on the biggest set waves.
Shane Sykes (KZNC), who was eliminated in a major upset in the U17 Boys semifinals, was the most impressive surfer at the event and was crowned the Surfer of the Contest, winning the All Aboard Travel / Zigzag Mag award of a free air ticket to join a surf trip where he will be featured in a photo editorial article in the magazine.
2014 Hurley SA Junior Champs (Lower Point, Jeffreys Bay)
Freedom Cup (Provincial team points)
1. KWA-ZULU NATAL CENTRAL 29 450 points
2. EASTERN PROVINCE
3. WESTERN PROVINCE
6. SOUTHERN KZN
7. SOUTHERN CAPE
8. SA DEVELOPMENT ACADEMY 14 144
1. Michael Monk (BOR)
2. Matt McGillivray (EP)
3. Ntando Msibi (DEV)
4. Bevan Willis (KZNC)
1. Teal Hogg (KZNC)
2. Anoush Zakarian (BOL)
3. Chanelle Botha (SKZN)
4. Jade Mets (KZNC)
1. Adin Masencamp (BOL)
2. Koby Oberholzer (KZNC)
3. Joshe Faulkner (EP)
4. Sebastian Williams (EP)
1. Sophie Bell (KZNC)
2. Anna Jellema-Butler (WP)
3. Ashleigh Vaughan (EP)
4. Natasha van Greunen (WP)
1. Max Elkington (WP)
2. Angelo Faulkner (EP)
3. Saxton Randall (KZNC)
4. Eli Beukes (WP)
1. Kai Woolf (EP)
2. Gabi Lailvaux (KZNC)
3. Julia Ploughman (WP)
4. Olivia Izzard (KZNC)