2017 ESA Northeast Regionals — Full Results + Photo Gallery

May 29, 2017 • East Coast Contests

All photos and captions by Dick “Mez”Meseroll — The Eastern Surfing Association (ESA) held its 2017 Northeast Regionals this past weekend in Belmar, New Jersey on 16th Avenue, across from Eastern Lines Surf Shop. This was the ESA’s third and final regional event that qualifies the participating competitors for The Easterns® Surfing Championships that will be held in Nags Head, North Carolina, on September 17-23 at Jennette’s Pier, as well as the USA Championships being held next month in California.

The weekend began with sunny, hot, summer-like air temps on Friday with clean waist-high peelers for the adult divisions. Saturday saw a thirty-degree drop in temps, clouds, onshore winds, and bouts of rain for the start of the youth divisions. This provided a building windswell throughout the day that gave competitors some fun waves going into the finals on Sunday.

Joe Grottola, the ESA’s Northeast Regional Director, was not only overseeing the event but was a competitor as well, claiming top spots in both Legends Shortboard and Longboard divisions. East Coast legend Peter Pan won the Iron Man Award for his final placings in Grand Legends, Legends Longboard, SUP, and Open Bodyboard divisions. Jonathon Cahn won the Unsinkable Polarized Men’s Division, and Becca Speak took the Women’s Division in her very first regional event.

Kyle Tester, a New Jersey native, former ESA All-Star, and surfer for Rip Curl, claimed the Youth Iron Man Award for his win in GoPro Open Shortboard and 2nd-place finishes in Junior Men’s U18 and Boys U16 divisions. Tester won a brand-new GoPro Hero 5 for his efforts, adding, “It is always exciting to get to surf a contest in your home state with great people — no matter where the search takes you, there’s no place like home.” ESA All-Star and Belmar local Logan Kamen battled with Tester to win the Boys U16, and took 2nd in the GoPro Open and 5th in the Junior Men U18 divisions.

Maine’s Maddie Ryan took home the Iron Woman Award for her wins in the the Junior Women’s U18 and Junior Women’s Longboard divisions. Ryan also claimed 2nd-place in Girls U16 and enjoyed the ESA’s event that’s not just all about competing. “I really enjoy participating in the ESA’s Northeast Regionals because it is more than just a competitive event,” Ryan said. “I have the chance to see friends from my district as well as other ESA local districts that I may not see often.”

New Hampshire surfer and ESA All-Star Kainalu Nichols won the event’s Hot Wave Award for a 9.0 score during his Junior Men’s Longboard heat on Saturday. Nichols placed 3rd in that division, 1st in Junior Men’s U18, and 4th in the GoPro Open. Nichols said, “I have never won a regional event before, so this feels awesome! My surfing has been improving every day, and I am excited to surf at Easterns® in September.”

Two Junior All-Stars made it to the finals of the Menehune U12 division, in which New York’s Chase Lieder won 1st-place. CJ Mangio and Tucker Collins came in 2nd and 3rd, respectively. The ESA is extremely proud of its All-Star team members throughout the East Coast. Finalists in all adult and youth divisions received ESA 50th commemorative awards printed by Plak That Printing Co. with photos of waves from the Northeast region provided by Ralph Fatello. The photo for the special awards was provided by ESM co-founder Richard “Mez” Meseroll, who was the event’s official photographer.

Adult division winners walked away with new OluKai footwear, and the Men’s finalists received sunglasses from Unsinkable Polarized. Sharkbanz, Phunky Apparel, Chums, and Surfco Hawaii offered prizes for the finalists as well, while Sticky Bumps provided surf wax for all the competitors throughout the event.

Final results and daily recap videos by Shoots-Media are embedded below the gallery and posted on the event’s webpage, ESA’s social media pages: Facebook – Eastern Surfing Association and Instagram – @surfesa.

16th Street in Belmar, NJ, site of the 2017 ESA Northeast Regional Championships.

Day one was a scorcher with air temps in the 90s and the ladies packing the beachfront test driving their summer swimsuits. Look closely — two girls for every boy as The Beach Boys sing, or perhaps more?

But with water temps in the limb-numbing low to mid 50,s it was no time for Ladies Longboard winner Kim Romagnesi from New York to paddle out without the aide of a 3-mil wetsuit.

Wagon wheel-sized pizzas are a Jersey trademark. Go big or go home — and don’t disrespect the pizza parlor (a real one that is) by asking for pineapple, barbecue chicken, or other fou-fou shit on your pie… or you might be asked to leave (or at least laughed out of the joint).

Yeah, the weather was all over the place with late-spring wackiness, and the Atlantic didn’t exactly present its best waves. But it was good enough, and the surfers of every division were more than up to the challenge.

How many regular season comps, Regionals, Eastern Championships, and 1st-place trophies in umpteen divisions across 40+ decades has Long Island legend and East Coast Surfing Hall Of Famer Ed Fawess been involved in? We bet even he doesn’t know, but the man keeps winning and staying fit as a fiddle as the years and heats clock by. Number one again in the Grand Legends (that’s over 60, groms) and once again headed to Easterns this September.

ESA-Southern New Jersey District Co-Director Joe Grottola scored double victories in both Legends Longboard and Legends Over 50.

One of the ESA’s early guiding lights and outgoing East Coast Surfing Hall Of Fame President Cecil Lear and incoming ECSHOF president Gary Germain dropped in to to check out the comp and talk transition.

The SUP division about to hit the still-frigid mid-May water. At least they don’t have to lay down or sit in the ice bath conditions waiting for a wave.

One day you’re on the beach at the Jersey Shore in your two-piece slathered in sunscreen with the temps in the low 90s…

…The next day you’re up on the judges’ scaffolding freezing your tukus off with a 30+ degree temperature swing that dropped the mercury down to barely 50 degrees and a dank, biting nor’east wind blowing a gale. Yep, Mother Nature threw just about everything she could at the Northeast Regionals — except sizable surf.

You know things are not as good as you hoped for when the wake from party fishing boat Michelle 3 is bigger than the waves for the youth divisions.

On the Big Chill day Saturday, it was grab whatever you could beg, borrow, steal, or improvise in an attempt stay warm. East Coast Surfing Hall Of Famer and super tabulator Pam Hill from Florida did a little bit of all four and didn’t miss a beat.

South Jersey’s Kyle Tester was one of the impressive in-form surfers at this year’s Northeast Regionals, totally killing it in the soft conditions.

The 2017 ESA Freezing Ass Weather Fashion Show with beach models (left to right) Pam Hill, ESA Southeast Regional Director, Dylan O’Donnell, ESA logistics and scoring operator, Lisa Roselli, ESA-Southern New Jersey District Co-Director, Arlene Nichols, ESA-Northern New England District Co-Director, and Michelle Sommers, ESA Executive Director showing us all how to bundle up when Ma Nature throws you a meteorological curveball.

Long Island, NY’s, Chase Lieder, your 2017 ESA Northeast Regionals Boys U12 winner.

Chase with his ESA 50th anniversary custom photo plaque featuring a beautiful wave image by longtime New Hampshire photographer/filmer Ralph Fatello.

Morgan Iglay won Girls U16 and also took 2nd to a seemingly unstoppable, on-fire Maddie Ryan in the Junior Women’s Longboard bracket.

Morgan had plenty to smile about from her chair with little sister Audrey Iglay winning the Girls U14 trophy for the family fireplace mantle.

Another superbly in-form surfer at the 2017 Northeast Regionals was radically stylish ESA All-Star Kainalu Nichols, who took out 1st in Junior Men’s U18, 3rd in in Junior Men’s U18 Longboard, and tacked on a 4th-place finish in the GoPro Open Shortboard. For good measure, Kainalu also scored the event’s Hot Wave award.

An East Coast Surfing Hall Of Fame and New Jersey Surfing Hall Of Fame legend and former World Tour pro who got his start to surfing super stardom via the ESA, Mr. Dean Randazzo came down to check the action and visit with the organization that helped provide him with the competitive tools and tactics to do battle surfing in the big leagues.

Women’s 18-34 winner Becca Speak from the ESA-Northern New England District.

Becca Speak gets a rest while heading to the victory dais.

Event announcers Mike Beech (left) and Jeff Mosely (right) somehow kept those lips moving with insightful commentary and humor during Saturday’s freeze fest.

Maine native Maddie Ryan had one hell of a contest with wins in Junior Women’s U18 and Junior Women’s Longboard as well as a close 2nd to Morgan Iglay in Girls U16. To top things off, Maddie also earned the Youth Iron Woan award.

Maddie Ryan beaming all the way back to Maine.

Ryan’s Express ran right through the competition in her three divisions, just falling short of a hat trick with the aforementioned 2nd in Girls U16.

Maddie with another pic for the wall.

(Left) Mickey “2M” McCarthy’s big-hearted spirit is alive and well, carrying on strong in the ESA. (Right) Hopefully the spirit of Mick has implanted itself in groms like CJ Mangio, who gave words of encouragement and advice to Will Grossarth before his 4th-place finals finish in Boys U14.

Long Island’s CJ Mangio struck gold in the Boys U14, with a solid 2nd in Menehune U12.

There’s nothing more heartwarming than seeing good sportsmanship and respect on display, especially in the Groms divisions, like when Cole Devaney, who surfed to a solid 2nd-place right on the heels of winner Mangio, bounded over as fast as he could to congratulate his heatmate despite the fact that he lost a close one. You’re a winner in our book, Mr. Devaney.

Saturday’s 16th Ave. Freeze-Out was not a day fit for man nor beast, leaving both the beach and boardwalks all to the hearty ESA competitors and support crew.

During a rare interference call during one particular youth clash, the judges pow-wowed and took their time to get it right like the pros they are.

Long Island’s Jack Richards had a tough heat draw with both Kyle Tester and Logan Kamen in the Boys U16 final but showcased some very good surfing nonetheless.

Talk about impressive moves — it was hard enough getting a good lip bash in on a shortboard, but local Spring Lake Heights logger Keaton Fortney popped this off the top on his 9’0″ single-fin like he was riding a 5’10” tri.

Beaming like the rays of the morning sun, Miss Audrey Iglay gets the chair up to the awards stand for her Girls U14 win.

Another in-form killer was Central New Jersey’s Logan Kamen, who took out the Boys U16 in the Northeast Regionals’ battle royale against an equally in-form South Jersey-ite Kyle Tester, who took 2nd-place with lightning fast moves by both in slow-as-molasses waves. These kids can surf!

Kai Nichols (left) and Keaton Fortney (right) provide the sturdy arm and legs for Logan Kamen’s chair up the beach and on to the victory stand.

Junior Mens U18 Longboard winner Jack Hendee from South Jersey cross-stepped his way to a solid victory and a trip to the Outer Banks in September.

Hot Wave award winner Kainalu Nichols (left) and Youth Iron Man Award winner Kyle Tester (right). Two of the event’s most impressive surfers no doubt.

Thumbs up if you qualified for the ESA Eastern Championships at Jennette’s Pier in kill Devil Hills, NC, this September. It looks like Aurelien Bouche-Pillon, 1st-place finisher in the Masters division, most certainly is. Congratulations to all contestants and qualifiers and see you there!

Eastern Surfing Association 2017 Northeast Regionals – Day 1 from Shoots Media on Vimeo.

Eastern Surfing Association 2017 Northeast Regional – Day 2 from Shoots Media on Vimeo.

Eastern Surfing Association 2017 Northeast Regionals – Day 3 from Shoots Media on Vimeo.

The ESA wants to thank all of its sponsors for the 2017 Northeast Surfing Championships.

  • Shoots-Media Inc.
  • Sharkbanz
  • Phunky
  • Eastern Lines Surf Shop
  • Town of Belmar
  • Unsinkable Polarized
  • GoPro
  • com
  • Rip Curl
  • OluKai
  • Surfer
  • Eastern Surf Magazine
  • Chums
  • Sticky Bumps
  • Surfco Hawaii
  • Ralph Fatello
  • Richard “Mez” Meseroll
  • Leonik Engineering
  • Media in Motion
  • Tara Mosley Graphic Design
  • Plak That Printing Co.
  • Harrington Graphic & Screenprinting
  • Carve Designs
  • DoughBoys Authentic Wood Fired Pizza
  • Fins Tropicali Cuisine
  • Playa Bowls
  • Jimmy’s Pizza Place
  • Hand Sauce
  • Coffee Surf Company
  • E Street Bagels
  • The Sea Girt Lodge
  • Gerry Matthews
  • Tim Bridges
  • John Ross Productions

The ESA, which is celebrating its 50th year in 2017, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit amateur athletic organization dedicated to the sport of amateur surfing. The organization promotes amateur competition for surfers of all ages and abilities, and is dedicated to the establishment and preservation of free access to a clean shoreline and ocean environment.

Press Contact:

Michelle Sommers

Executive Director, Eastern Surfing Association





“Unsinkable Polarized” Mens (18-29)

1st                   Jonathon Cahn NY

2nd                  Brian Farrell CNJ

3rd                  Jamie Kelly SNE

4th                  Louis Papa SNJ

5th                  John Alburger SNJ

6th                  Matt Roselli SNE

Masters (30-39)

1st                  Aurelion Bouch-Pillon SNE

2nd                  Chris Herbert SNE

Senior Men (40-49)                 

1st                   Jack Murphy CNJ

2nd                  Brian Bourgeois SNJ

3rd                  Kevin Roy SNE

4th                  Yuhiko Sato NY

5th                  Kevin Brennan NY

6th                  George Stella NY

Legends (50 & Over)

1st                   Joe Grottola SNJ

2nd                  Lenny Nichols NNE

3rd                  Tim Finnegan NY

4th                  Paul Pallitto SNJ

Grand Legends (60 & Over, M/F)

1st                  Ed Fawess NY

2nd                  Peter Pan SNE

3rd                  Gary Finnegan CNJ

4th                  Tom Leonik SNJ

5th                  Danny Cahon NY

6th                  Tim Cominos NY

Women (18-34)

1st                   Becca Speak NNE

2nd                  Rachel Nessuno SNJ

3rd                  Kara Borzillo SNJ

Ladies (35 & Over)

1st                  Lisa Roselli SNJ

2nd                  Kim Romagnesi NY

3rd                  Lorraine Costa SNJ

4th                  Jennifer Grottola SNJ

5th                  Joanie Sapienza CNJ

Mens Longboard (18-34)

1st                  Jonathon Cahn NY

2nd                  Jamie Kelley SNE

3rd                  John Alburger SNJ

4th                  Louis Papa SNJ

Masters Longboard (35-49)

1st                  Gerry Matthews

2nd                  Chris Lisi SNJ

3rd                  Kevin Brennan NY

4th                  Kevin Roy SNE

5th                  Chris Herbert SNE

Legends Longboard (50 & Over)

1st                  Joe Grottola SNJ

2nd                  Lenny Nichols NNE

3rd                  Edward Fawess NY

4th                  Tom Leonik SNJ

5th                  Peter Pan SNE

6th                  Tim Finnegan NY

Womens Longboard (18-34)

1st                  Rachel Nessuno SNJ

2nd                  Kara Borzillo SNJ

Ladies Longboard (35 & Over)

1st                  Kim Romagnesi NY

2nd                   Lisa Roselli SNJ

3rd                  Lorraine Costa SNJ

4th                  Jennifer Grottola SNJ

5th                  Joanie Sapienza CNJ

6th                  Chris Holub NY

Junior Men U18

1st                  Kainalu Nichols NNE

2nd                  Kyle Tester SNJ

3rd                  Kyle Caracciolo NY

4th                  Jake Hendee SNJ

5th                  Logan Kamen CNJ

6th                  Drew Caracciolo NY

Junior Women U18

1st                  Maddie Ryan NNE

2nd                  Morgan Iglay CNJ

3rd                  Emily Grossarth CNJ

4th                  Erin Eisner CNJ

5th                  Sway Dolan CNJ

6th                  Cali Pierce CNJ

Boys U16

1st                  Logan Kamen CNJ

2nd                  Kyle Tester SNJ

3rd                  Jake Dematto CNJ

4th                  Jack Richards NY

5th                  Owen O’Donnell NY

6th                  Stephen Zakruff SNJ

Girls U16

1st                  Morgan Iglay NY

2nd                  Maddie Ryan NNE

3rd                  Brynn Bowmon SNJ

4th                  Emily Gossarth CNJ

5th                  Lily Gartner SNE

6th                  Erin Eisner CNJ

Boys U14

1st                  CJ Mangio NY

2nd                  Cole Deveny SNJ

3rd                  Chase Lieder NY

4th                  Will Grossarth CNJ

5th                  Tucker Collins SNJ

6th                  William Bumbernick SNJ

Menehune Bodyboard

1st                  Ronan Oberlander NY

2nd                  CJ Fay NY

Girls U14

1st                  Audrey Iglay CNJ

2nd                  Shania Wetham NY

3rd                  Avery Peacock NNE

4th                  Sophia Martino SNE

5th                  Page Hedde SNE

6th                  Zoe Bourgeois SNJ

Menehune U12

1st                  Chase Lieder NY

2nd                  CJ Mangio NY

3rd                  Tucker Collins SNJ

4th                  Aaron Gershkovick NY

5th                  Charlie Weimer NY

6th                  Cory Levy SNJ

Jr. Men Longboard (17 & under)

1st                  Jack Hendee SNJ

2nd                  Jake DeMatteo CNJ

3rd                  Kainalu Nichols NNE

4th                  Chase Deegan SNJ

5th                  Keaton Fortney CNJ

6th                  Nicholas Hutchins NNE

Jr. Women Longboard (17 & under)

1st                  Maddie Ryan NNE

2nd                  Morgan Iglay CNJ

3rd                  Lily Gartner SNE

4th                  McKenna Matthews CNJ

5th                  Erin Eisner CNJ

6th                  Kailani Mergen NY

Menehune Longboard (13 & under, M/F)

1st                  Miller Brennan NY

2nd                  Quinn Battagliese NNE

3rd                  Chase Lieder NY

4th                  Charlie Weimar NY

5th                  Noah Gartner SNE

6th                  Ryken Kutner NY

Open Bodyboard (all ages, M/F)

1st                  Pat Redman SNE

2nd                  Peter Pan SNE

“Go Pro” Open Shortboard

1st                   Kyle Tester SNJ

2nd                  Logan Kamen CNJ

3rd                  Keaton Fortney CNJ

4th                  Kainalu Nichols NNE

5th                  Jake DeMatto CNJ

6th                  Stephen Zakruff SNJ

Open SUP (all ages, M/F)

1st                   Sammy Wertheim NY

2nd                  Peter Pan SNE

3rd                  Chris Holub NY

4th                  Jake Wertheim NY

5th                  Ally Wertheim NY

6th                  Joanie Sapienza CNJ

Iron Man – Peter Pan SNE

Youth Iron Man – Kyle Tester SNJ

Youth Iron Woman – Maddie Ryan NNE

Hot Wave – Kainalu Nichols NNE (9.0)


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