OCEANSIDE, California/USA (Saturday, August 11, 2012) ? Sage Erickson (Ventura, CA), 21, has won the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) 6-Star Paul Mitchell Supergirl Pro over fellow ASP WCT surfer Paige Hareb (NZL), 22, in peaky two-to-four foot (1 metre) waves at Oceanside Pier.
The California talent started strong in the final and led the bout after the heat?s opening exchange with powerful backhand turns on the lefts running in to the pier. Erickson went on to hold on to the lead for the remainder of the heat despite Hareb?s valient effort and the Paul Mitchell Supergirl Pro marks the first major ASP victory of her young career.
?I?ve haven?t had a big victory yet and winning feels so amazing,? Erickson said. ?Coming in to this event, I really wanted to win. I was so inspired by Bianca (Buitendag) in Peru and Lakey?s (Peterson) win at the US Open and I came up against some really tough matches and after I got through that heat with Courtney (Conlogue) I just said ?today?s my day.??
The Oceanside victory marks a shift in momentum for Erickson after her impressive Quarterfinals finish at the US Open of Surfing and has added incentive to put together a standout year on the women?s ASP WCT for 2013.
?I haven?t had a big win in a 6-Star and I?m just looking to requalify for the WCT,? Erickson said. ?I?ve had trouble in my rookie year and this win brings a lot of confidence going in to Europe and I really want to be on the WCT next year, so I?m really thrilled with this win.?
Hareb, who has been competing on the ASP WCT for four years, was in fierce form at the Paul Mitchell Supergirl Pro, besting Australian Phillipa Anderson (AUS) and Jacqueline Silva (BRA), 33, en route to the Final, but was unable to put a stop to Erickson in their battle for the win and finished runner-up overall.
?I think my result in Huntington was the best I?ve done in the US Open and coming in second here is one of my best results for the year,? Hareb said. ?I?m pretty happy, I can?t complain. I?m going to go home to do some snowboarding and do a trip to Fiji and work on my boards and cruise until next year.?
Courtney Conlogue (Santa Ana, CA), 19, was responsible for the day?s top scores once again, unloading a series of committed backhand turns for a near-perfect 9.83 out of 10 in her Quarterfinals victory, but fell in a close heat to Erickson to take an equal 3rd place finish overall.
?It was definitely a super close heat and I just couldn?t find that last one,? Conlogue said. ?Sage (Erickson) did a good job out there. She got over me on priority and put on a great show. I had fun this event and was able to practice quite a bit and equal 3rd?s not too bad. I wish I could have won, but everybody does.?
Jacqueline Silva (BRA), 33, used her veteran experience against the youth uprising and continually strung together standout performances to finish equal 3rd. The Semifinals result marks Silva?s best of the season and the South American natural-footer hopes to carry her success over to Europe to requalify for the 2013 ASP WCT.
?It?s my best result of the year so far and I?m pretty happy to get third,? Silva said. ?I would have liked to have made the final, but to get third going in to Europe, I?m pretty happy.?