BELMAR, NJ — Shortly after sunrise this past Sunday, all eyes were on the Belmar 17th Avenue beachfront, where a calm, flat ocean would have been a welcomed sight for many — except for this group of beachgoers.
They were gathered for one major reason — to compete in the final day of the Eastern Surfing Association’s 2019 Northeast Regional Surfing Championship. Surfers of all ages from Maine through New Jersey, including the Great Lakes, traveled to Belmar for the three-day event, recognized as the premier surfing event for amateur surfers who qualified through their local ESA districts to earn points to be invited.
But as the clouds cleared and the “full moon” high tide turned around mid-morning on May 19, the waves began to trickle in and build slowly — making way for the competition to begin after a more than a two-hour delay.
And for three local favorites — sisters Morgan, Audrey and Seton Iglay of Manasquan — it was worth the wait. They placed in the finals in the youth and junior divisions and will now go on to compete in the Easterns Surfing Championship that will be held in September in Nags Head, N.C.
Seventeen-year-old Morgan, a three-time high school surfing champion, took the title in the junior women’s longboard under-18 division and placed fourth in the junior women’s under-18 division. Audrey, 14, finished third in the junior women’s longboard under-18 division and third in the girls under-16 group. And Seton, 11, captured second place in the girl under12 division and sixth in the girls under-14 competition.
For full results of the Northeast regionals, including all local winners, click here.
Local businesses supporting the event included Eastern Lines Surf Shop, Don’s Pizza King, Playa Bowls, Coffee Surf Co., Belmar Tourism, Fins Tropical Cuisine and E Street Bagels.