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By Jake Howard

With the surf pumping at Salt Creek last weekend, the groms were ripping at the most recent Western Surfing Association competition. Stepping up his game was local rising star Slater Van Bruggen.

The Dana Point hammer finished second in the 10 and Under division, a critical result as he now cements his position atop the ratings heading into the WSA West Coast Championships coming at Church this May.

Van Bruggen, 10, has been a competitive force all year, thanks to his abundance of talent and incredible mindset both in and out of the water.

Slater Van Bruggen. Photo: Courtesy of @dp.surfcoach

A hard-working, good student at ILA Independent Learning Academy, Van Bruggen is in fourth grade but already surfing well beyond his years. Dana Point could have a little Mark Occhilupo in the making with this powerful goofy-footer, who has a vicious backhand snap.

Van Bruggen recently joined forces with Electric sunglasses for some support and has been working hard with coach Lucas Taub to dial in the technique and competitive savvy.

Together, they’ve got about a month to prep for the big WSA showdown. For the salty old surf contest wonks out there, if the ocean provides, think Occy at J-Bay.

If you have a candidate for Grom of the Week, we want to know. Send an email to jakehoward1@gmail.com.

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