San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State’s surf team rides into a new season

The surf team club began their 2023-2024 season on Oct. 28 at Huntington Beach Pier
Emily Augustine
Graphic by Emily Augustine.

San Diego State’s highly competitive surf team club, which comprises men and female shortboard and longboard surfers, competes in the National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA).

The NSSA is the leading amateur competitive surfing association in the United States. Its primary goals are focused on advancing the sport, hosting high-quality events and emphasizing the importance of academic achievement for the benefit of its members. 

With above-average surfing conditions, SDSU surfers kicked off their 2023-2024 season at the NSSA’s Southwest Collegiate Opener on the weekend of Oct. 28 at Huntington Beach Pier. 

The event was organized into three categories: Men’s Shortboard, Women’s Shortboard and Coed Longboard. 

For an explanation of the competition’s rules, including scoring criteria, refer to the season’s rule book provided by the NSSA.

Men’s Shortboard on Oct. 28-29:

The first round of the Men’s Shortboard competition featured 12 SDSU surfers. Among them, Micah Carlston, Gabriel Giradin, Gavin Hogan, Thatcher Johnson, Tim Linas, Ryan Roberts and Tafton Thompson – who advanced to the second round. 

Hogan advanced to the quarterfinals, where five waves earned him a total score of 7.30. He had finished second place in round three with a 10.93 score, and he won his second-round heat by 1.66, with a score of 17.40.

Carlston competed against Hogan in round three, posting a 9.90 score. In his second-round heat, he scored a 9.24.

Linas finished with a total score of 9.16 in round three. In round two, he scored a 12.04.

Giradin and Roberts competed against Carlston in round two. Giradin scored a 7.24 and Roberts scored a 6.07.

Thompson attained a total score of 6.47 in his second-round heat.

Johnson finished second with a total score of 13.17 in round two, earning a spot in round three. However, he was unable to surf in round three due to a family emergency.

Dylan Franzman from Point Loma Nazarene won the final round by 0.3 with a total score of 13.40. 

Women’s Shortboard on Oct. 29:

In the initial round of the Women’s Shortboard event, five surfers represented SDSU. Audrey Iglay, Sophia Martinho and Tori Price advanced to round two. 

Price qualified for the quarterfinals, where she surfed a single wave during the fourth heat, concluding with a score of 1.37. She had finished third in round two with a 4.07 score. 

Iglay and Martinho went head-to-head in the third heat of the quarterfinal round. Among the four surfers, Iglay finished third with a score of 3.87 and Martinho finished fourth with a score of 3.77. They had also competed against each other in the opening heat of the second round. In round two, Iglay scored an 8.83 and Martinho finished with a score of 2.67.

UCLA’s Lilie Kulber won the final round by 1.83, with a total score of 15.73.

Coed Longboard on Oct. 29:

Chloe Coleman, William Dewolfe and Olin Meyer were SDSU’s longboard entries, with all three advancing to round two of the competition.

Coleman made it to the quarterfinals, where she caught five waves in the second heat and scored an 8.30. She had finished second place in round two with an 11.37 score.

Meyer competed against Coleman and three other longboarders in his second-round heat, posting a 3.37 score. Dewolfe competed against three other surfers in his second-round heat, where he finished with a total score of 9.10.

Cal Poly’s Jack VanWagoner won the final round by 0.9, with a total score of 14.10.


“Overall, everyone was surfing really good,” said Linas, who is a third-year economics major and this year’s surf president. “I’m happy with how everyone performed and everyone seemed really committed to the team — which is the biggest thing for me.”

The team’s next competition is at Huntington Beach Pier on Jan. 27-28. Linas noted that leading up to the event, they plan to compete in mock heats to better acclimate themselves to the specific skills required for competitive surfing, which differ from skills utilized in recreational surfing.


About the Contributor
Emily Augustine, '23-24 Graphics Editor