Ventura continues domination on Day 2 of Quiksilver Game Week VC scarcely defeats San Diego by 3 points, 166-163

Monday, May 10th, Ventura Seaside Park/C Street “Pipes”. Day 2 of the Quiksilver Game Week at Ventura”s home break saw yet another close game as Ventura County defeated first time challengers San Diego by 3 points, Ventura’s 166 to SD’s 163, with four minutes left in the fourth quarter.

Riding off of yesterday’s narrow margin win against Santa Cruz, Ventura continued their pattern of pushing it to the wire within the final quarter. Despite the absence of SD’s Taylor Knox, San Diego arrived with superstar Rob Machado and veteran Dean Randazzo with support from a younger roster of San Diego surfers. In the first quarter, San Diego took the lead by 1.5 points over Ventura (Q1: SD:42 VC:40.5) with Jason Bennett’s 13 point combined score which showcased the power surfer attacking rights and lefts with powerful snaps and a solid rhythm. Sean Marceron showed consistent speed and power on the right handers while connecting through the flat mid tide rights in the head high surf. Ventura’s Keoni Cuccia, the Game’s eventual MVP, busted out a 12.5 with left hander hooks and good consistent waves. Goofy footed Hank Mills proved that backsides on the rights would provide him with the scores necessary to build the foundation for Ventura early in the game.

In the second quarter, SD experienced a lull, which didn’t stop Rob Machado from catching the only high scoring wave with an explosive 7.5. Machado’s flawless style, had even Ventura local crowd cheering as Machado threw huge fans while performing perfect cutbacks on the long rights. This wave contrasted with Machado’s second best wave of 3.5, as the SD group was unable to post anything else over a 4.5. Ventura’s 2nd quarter group included heavy hitters, Nathaniel Curran, Bobby Martinez, Adam Virs and the legendary 3 time world champion, Tom Curren. Nathaniel Curran raced down lined up rights and wedging lefts posting a score of 10 while goofy footed teammate, Bobby Martinez opted for the steeper walls that the northern left peaks were providing. Martinez’s technical prowess while maintaining speed in a variety of hooks and huge snaps, gave Team Ventura the added momentum as he scored a solid combined score of 13. Adam Virs also surfed well, with frontside airs over the foam and wave selection that allowed him for strong maneuvers and top to bottom turns. After an unlucky second quarter, SD was now at a deficit of 5 points to Ventura (Q2: VC: 82.5, SD: 77.5).

With veteran Dean Randazzo, the explosive surfer originally from New Jersey wowed the crowd as he caught a wide variety of waves for judges to score. Opting for the right handers on the south peaks, Randazzo raked in a combined score of 12.5 with a best wave of 7. However, SD was in for a pounding as Ventura’s 3rd quarter group punished SD with Dane Reynolds’ massive frontside air reverse. The Ventura crowd stood on their feet cheering wildly as Reynolds earned the Most Radical Maneuver award for the game. His combined wave score rendered a whopping 14 combined score followed by strong performances from teammates Keoni Cuccia (12 points), Hank Mills (10.5 points) and Joe Curren (9 points). Ventura now extended their lead to 10.5 points over San Diego.

The San Diego coaches headed by David Barr realized that they were not completely out of the game with a 10.5 point deficit. With a solid fourth quarter group including several substitutions, Rob Machado led his crew with rippable lefts on the northern peaks and scored a game high combined score of 14.5 (BW1: 7.5, BW2: 7). While teammates were further south, {{{Imperial}}} Beach resident Kyle Knox scored a combined score of 11.5, with long right handers. Late substitution, Dane Johnson aided Zach Keenan’s 5.5 best wave with Johnsons’ own 5.0, driving the SD fourth quarter group to double digit individual scores with the exception of Austin Ware (9 points). Although SD managed to turn out their highest quarter score in the game with a 45.5, there were several missed opportunities as large clean sets rolled through empty in the southern peaks. Ventura needed only 36 points to beat San Diego but was only able to surpass this goal with only four minutes left in the fourth quarter. Tom Curren remained in the southern peaks, throwing classic Curren cutbacks on the rights that rolled through. Bobby Martinez and Nathaniel Curran, pumped out solid best wave scores of 6’s. However, with the time ticking, the Ventura team and fans became nervous as a simple 36 score looked tougher than expected as the wave sets slowed down. With 2 points left to attain in order to surpass San Diego, Tom Curren scored a 4.0 tipping Ventura over the scale, narrowly defeating San Diego on Day 2 of the Quiksilver Game Week (VC: 166 to SD:163).

Day 2 of the Quiksilver Game week at Ventura’s Seaside park at C Street, marks the second win for Ventura in front of large local support. In the first game weekend at Huntington Beach, Ventura lost to Orange County in a close game, giving Ventura a record of 2 wins and 1 loss before entering into the tomorrow’s final day of the Quiksilver game week against rivals Orange County, Tuesday May 11th at 9:30 a.m at Ventura’s Seaside park/C street. The Quiksilver Game Week is the second of four stops for the National Surf League’s 2004 California Cup. The National Surf League’s The Game was created by pro surfer Brad Gerlach featuring a revolutionary new surf competition format. The format showcases team vs. team competition including a full 15 surfer roster, landcoaches, water coaches, time outs and substitutions to just name a few. The next stop for the California cup will be in Santa Cruz beginning Friday, May 14th to Sunday May 16th at 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Please check for frequent news and stats updates. For photo updates, please check NSL photographer Kurt Jones’ website at: ttp://