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Surf’s up: Surf team expands to experienced middle school surfers

Photo credit: Kim Smith
Senior Chloe Resnick and world language teacher Mark Forte stand together at Zuma beach after Resnick competed in a surf competition. For the fall season, the surf team has expanded to include experienced middle school surfers.

If you are an experienced middle school surfer and are eager to catch waves with your Archer peers, then you’re in luck — the surf team is now open to you.

Archer’s surf team was formed last year in collaboration with Loyola High School‘s team of 10 years. The team was initially intended only for upper school students. However, this fall season, it will be made up of two middle and eight upper school surfers: seven longboarders and three shortboarders.

They will begin practicing in mid-October at beaches such as Zuma or El Porto, depending on the weather. World language teacher Mark Forte is one of the surf coaches, and he said they are working on finalizing their competition schedule.

Middle schoolers will be able to participate in surf practices but will not be eligible to compete until they become freshmen because Archer competes in a high school surf league. Athletic Director Kim Smith coaches the surf team along with Forte. Smith said they both surf with the students in the ocean, while coaching them and sharing their experiences.

“We would ask that for middle schoolers, they have some surf experience … essentially, the surf team is not a ‘learn how to surf club,'” Forte said. “We ask that the middle schoolers have some experience just to be able to catch waves on their own and stay safe out there.” 

Forte said since the majority of Archer sports have a middle and upper school division, he and Smith wanted to provide all students with the opportunity to be on the surf team. Smith said the decision to expand the team stemmed from student interest.

“We had a couple of surfers reach out who were interested in participating, and that fueled the decision to include middle school surfers,” Smith said. “I’m excited to build a program that our students are interested in, to get them to pursue their passion, be in the ocean and connect with each other.” 

Senior Chloe Resnick started surfing when she was around 4 years old. She said she joined the Archer surf program because it allows her to participate in surfing, usually an individual sport, in a group format with peers from school. Resnick hopes middle schoolers gain positive experiences and improve their skills.

I hope middle schoolers either get more comfortable in the water with surfing, or that they just bond with some upper schoolers,” Resnick said. “What I hope to get out of [this season] is to have a good time and do well in the competition.”

Eighth grader Laney McGinn has been surfing since she was around 10 years old and is a longboarder. She said she feels excited about the team’s expansion and described some of her goals for this season. 

“[I hope to] become closer to upper schoolers and make more friendships … [Also] to be able to surf on my own because normally I surf with other people,” McGinn said.

Overall, Resnick said she is anticipating an exceptional season with the expansion of the team.

“For surfing, I don’t really think it matters about how old you are. It’s just about if you’re comfortable in the ocean,” Resnick said. “I love the idea. I think expanding it to middle school is a good idea to have more people on the team … I’m excited.” 

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About the Contributor
Emily Paschall, Senior Reporter
Emily Paschall joined the Oracle as a staff reporter in 2022. She is now a senior reporter. She participates in dance at Archer. She is also a part of the Ambassador Leadership Team Advisory Board and Dance Leadership Team. In her free time, Emily enjoys spending time with family and friends, listening to K-pop or Taylor Swift, and playing with her dog.

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