The Woolworths Victorian Junior Titles concludes with state champions being crowned

Published on 05/05/2024

Although the swell slightly dropped overnight the Groms still had plenty to carve up as Sara Hickson (Rye) and Arieh Paterson (Somers) took out the Under 18 divisions for Round 3 of the Woolworths Victorian Junior Titles. It was an exciting day of action with the state champions also being crowned once the competitors’ final results were locked in.

The energy of the crowd lifted as the Under 16 Boys hit the water, and a tight battle ensued across the heat. Remy Filler (Jan Juc) had put up a strong backhand snap to start the final, scoring a 6.83, giving the rest of the boys the rev up they needed to kick into gear. Jack Lindsay (Jan Juc) then saw the perfect opportunity for a high score as a bomb set rolled into the lineup.

Lindsay took off on the first wave of the set and squared up off the bottom, absolutely belting the first section before firing off a series of snaps to score a 9.17. Behind Lindsay, Tarvi Woods (Fingal) found his way onto a similar-sized wave, putting together multiple backhand hits of his own to score an 8.00 point ride. With a few big scores on the board, it became a battle of the backups, and Woods was able to put together a 6.10 point ride to take the win on a 14.10 combined heat total.

Filer came in second on 13.33 combined points with Lindsay and Jarvis Barrow (Jan Juc) placing third and fourth.

The Under 18 Boys final commenced with a sense of anticipation hanging in the air, each competitor readying themselves for the chance to take the first wave. After only a few minutes Jerry Kelly (Barwon Heads) wasted no time in his quest for victory. Kelly was keen to impress himself upon the final as soon as possible by fishing around the bank for inside runners in an effort to build a heat total.

Meanwhile, Arieh Paterson (Somers) decided to sit and wait which proved to be the right decision as he took off on a set wave and went back to back on two big turns to score an 8.00 point ride. Shortly after, Max Basset (Barwon Heads) made his run for first place as he locked in a 5.50 point ride on a quick running wave on the inside. Knowing that a state championship was on the line Basset went back out in search for a wave with more substance. He found this wave within moments and scored a 6.50 point ride for two slashing forehand re-entries.

However, Paterson was able to back up his previous score by lining up various vertical snaps on a bowly right hander to score a 6.93 point ride. As the heat drew to a close Patterson remained on top with a combined heat total of 14.93 points while Bassett placed second on 11.50 combined points.

Although Bassett didn’t win the round he was able to snatch up enough points to take out the all important Victorian State Title.

“It was fun waves, and even with the tide dropping out making conditions tricky there were still a few out there,” Basset said.

“It’s pretty emotional being in my last junior event but it has been a good experience. It’s cool to take out the state title as there are a lot of good competitors competing this year so it’s pretty good to get above them!”

The Under 18 Girls final unfolded with excitement as Ava Holland (Dromana) set the pace with her initial 7.00 point ride, carving through the water with an abundance of speed but still remaining in control. As the heat progressed, a sense of urgency swept through the lineup as a multiple-wave set rolled in. Taking off, Sarah Seurem rose to the occasion, executing a clean forehand carve that stood as a very impressive single manoeuver.

In the meantime, Ava Holland, spurred on by the competition, unleashed multiple powerful manoeuvers on a wave out the back, each turn a testament to her mastery of the back hand attack. Not to be outdone, Sara Hickson entered the flurry, moving gracefully across the wave’s face and sliding the tail out on the end section. It was clear Hickson was feeling the freedom of knowing she had already won the State Title, having won the previous two rounds, as she attacked the waves with confidence.

As the dust settled, Ava Holland emerged victorious, her last wave securing her place on the top of the final with a commanding 7.83 point ride. Despite Sara Hickson’s valiant efforts, her score of 6.40 left her in second place, just shy of the mark needed to overtake Holland’s lead. And though the ocean may not have provided the opportunity for a last-minute upset for Hickson, both Holland and Hickson remained thrilled by the result with both taking away a win.

“It feels really good to take out the state title against all my friends, it’s really exciting. Cape Woolamai is amazing with its beautiful sandy waves and it was pumping out there,” Hickson said.

Round 3 finals:

U18 Girls
1st – Ava Holland (Dromana), 14.83
2nd – Sara Hickson (Rye), 11.90
3rd – Sarah Seuren (Inverloch), 8.13
4th – Sophie Wilkinson (Shoreham), 4.93

U18 Boys
1st – Arieh Paterson (Somers), 14.93
2nd – Max Bassett (Barwon Heads), 11.50
3rd – Jerry Kelly (Barwon Heads), 9.63
4th – Jarrah Cicero (Sandy Point), 8.40

U16 Girls
1st – Lillian Bassed (Sandy Point), 10.90
2nd – Chloe Muscroft (Jan Juc), 7.00
3rd – Evie Lutz (Cowes), 4.87
4th – Cedar Davie (Jan Juc), 2.54

U16 Boys
1st – Tarvi Woods (Fingal), 14.10
2nd – Remy Filer (Jan Juc), 13.33
3rd – Jack Lindsay (Jan Juc), 13.17
4th – Jarvis Barrow (Jan Juc), 9.67

U14 Girls 
1st – Rose Holland (Dromana), 17.73
2nd – Estella Carbonelli (Jan Juc), 14.07
3rd – Scarlett Rennie (Cape Woolamai), 13.33
4th – Lily White (Blairgowrie), 4.10

U14 Boys
1st – Harlem Pec (Jan Juc), 14.27
2nd – Max Murray (Jan Juc), 9.07
3rd – Samuel Abetz (Jan Juc), 6.80
4th – Harry Cleary (Sorrento), 5.30

Woolworths Victorian Junior Surfing Titles overall:

U18 Girls
1st – Sara Hickson (Rye)
2nd – Ava Holland (Dromana)

U18 Boys
1st – Max Bassett (Barwon Heads)
2nd – Jerry Kelly (Barwon Heads)

U16 Girls 
1st – Lillian Bassed (Sandy Point)
2nd – Chloe Muscroft (Jan Juc)

U16 Boys
1st – Remy Filer (Jan Juc)
2nd – Jarvis Barrow (Jan Juc)

U14 Girls 
1st – Rose Holland (Dromana)
2nd – Scarlett Rennie (Cape Woolamai)

U14 Boys
1st – Harlem Pec (Jan Juc)
2nd – Angus Kennedy (Cowes)

Full scores and results for the event via

The Woolworths Victorian Junior Titles are supported by No TXT No Wrecks, VicRoads Community Safety Grants, Cancer Council Sunscreen and Surfing Victoria.

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