JAMM AQUINO / JAQUINO@STARBULLETIN.COM
Duane DeSoto scored 14.35 points in yesterday's final to win the Hawaiian South Shore at Queen's.
DeSoto wins second straight
Like many fathers, Duane DeSoto works hard to support his still-growing family. Lucky for him, part of his work includes surfing as a professional longboarder -- which is pure fun for DeSoto and something he's one of the best in the world at.
The 30-year-old from Ewa Beach won his second straight Steinlager Shaka Longboard Series event yesterday by taking the 24-man, pro-am division of the Hawaiian South Shore event at Queen's, the third contest of five in the series.
DeSoto picked up $1,200 with the victory, which he said was a welcome relief after also recently starting work full-time in construction. It was also a great birthday present for one of his four children, a daughter who turns 2 on Wednesday.
DeSoto and his wife expect their fifth child in January.
"This kind of work is so much better for my soul and for my life," DeSoto said. "I've learned to appreciate this a lot more. I take advantage of the opportunity to make some money and to surf -- and there were some good waves too. Just a wonderful day, a blessing."
After missing the first series event in April because he was participating in the world longboard championship in France, DeSoto scored 1,000 series points with his Hawaiian South Shore win to bring his total to 2,000 and a second-place ranking overall.
He scored 14.35 (out of 20 maximum) points for his top two waves in the four-man pro-am final.
The winner of the first event and the current series leader with 2,523 points, Isaac Kaneshiro was the runner-up with 13.83. Keegan Edwards (12.50) placed third, and Ned Snow (6.50) fourth.
Though a nice south swell was running with 4- to 8-foot-face waves at Queen's, there were several lulls during the 20-minute final that made multiple high-scoring rides hard to come by.
DeSoto, however, nabbed the first only 2 minutes into the decider when he received an 8.83 after executing a big off-the-top maneuver followed by a cutback/rebound combination and a brief cover-up on a right-breaking set. He was later able to add a 5.50 on his third and final ride, after moving to the inside section because of the sudden dearth of waves.
"At first I was trying to sit and wait because sometimes you can get two big sets," DeSoto said. "But it finally got to the point where I had to turn around and go for some smaller ones. You get a feeling where (you say), 'This is one of those heats.' It was real clear what everyone was doing (on the scoreboard)."
Kaneshiro was also able to open with a solid score -- a 7.83 at 3 minutes in -- but could only back it up with a 6.00 to fall just over a half-point short of DeSoto. Edwards was able to surf only two waves the entire heat, while Snow managed just one ride for his final score.
"I want to try and win (the series)," said Kaneshiro, who is also from Ewa Beach and working in construction after beginning his pro career as a shortboarder. "I've only started longboarding this year. It's like a rejuvenation for me."
Competition resumes today with the last day of the Hawaiian South Shore contest. Around 200 competitors are spread among the contest's 14 divisions.
From the three other division finals held yesterday, the winners were: Slater Trout (stand-up paddle, 17-under), Kamaki Worthington (stand-up paddle, open) and Herb Pruse (grandmasters 50-59).
The fourth series event will be held at Ala Moana Bowls near the end of this month.