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By: Adam Espino -- Huntington Beach
The sun came out early and hung around all day, but even the Southern California sunshine couldn’t compete with Women’s WCT #5 Malia Manuel on Day 5 of the 2014 Vans US Open of Surfing. Manuel put on a clinic during two rounds of competition and received the highest women’s heat scores in Round 2 and Round 3 of the Women’s WCT event. Her Round 3 score of 18.13 was the highest score of the day, taking into account both the Men’s and Women’s Day 5 heats. Manuel, who locked herself a spot in the Women’s Quarterfinals on Saturday, will definitely hope today’s momentum stays with her into the weekend.
In the afternoon, the final six heats of Men’s Round 2 saw solid performances by Australians Matt Banting, Bede Durbidge, Garrett Parkes, and Ryan Callinan. Callinan’s Heat 11 wave score of 9.40 was one of the few 9-plus wave scores of the competition thus far.
In a last second comeback, Huntington Beach native and local hero Brett Simpson surpassed Hizunome Bettero and Sebastian Zietz to join heatmate Kolohe Andino in the next round.
Stay tuned tomorrow as the weekend nears and the action heats up with Women’s Round 4, Men’s Round 3, and Junior Men’s Quarterfinals, in addition to skate and bmx practice in the bowl.