Santa Barbara’s Cole Robbins made his mark in surfing’s debut at the Pan American Games in Lima, Peru on Sunday.
The Santa Barbara High and UCSB graduate won a bronze medal in the longboard competition, making it to the semifinals where he lost to Uruguay’s Julian Schweizer, 15.10-12.50.
“I was determined for the gold but I’m proud to make the podium,” he said. “This was an important day for surfing.”
Robbins, 28, took the lead with a 7.33 ride on his third wave, but Schweizer rallied for the win by scoring 7.30 and 7.80 in his last two rides. Peru’s Benoit Clemente won the longboard title by beating Schweizer in the final.
Robbins, the son of Michael and Neilla Robbins, is currently ranked ninth after one stop on the World Surf League’s Longboard Tour. He finished third last year and won bronze medals at both the 2017 and 2018 World Championships.
Two UCSB men’s soccer players – senior forward Noah Billingsley and junior defender Hunter Ashworth – have been selected to play for New Zealand’s Men’s National Team at the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) U-23 Championship.
The tournament, which will be held in Fiji from Sept. 21 to Oct. 5, is part of the qualification process for the 2020 Olympic Games.
Former Gaucho defender Michael Boxall helped the Kiwis qualify for the 2008 Olympics.
“It’s a great honor to have our players represent their country,” UCSB coach Tim Vom Steeg said. “Noah, in particular, already received his first cap playing for the senior New Zealand team last summer.
“The international experience they get from playing in that competitive environment will help them when they come back in the fall.”
Both players were named to the All-Big West Conference first team last year. Billingsley was also tabbed to the NCAA All-Far West Region squad.
The Gauchos will open practice next Wednesday and play Westmont College in an exhibition match at Harder Stadium on Aug. 17.
NICK JOHNSON GOLF
The Sixth Annual Nick Johnson Memorial Golf Tournament has been scheduled for Sat., Oct. 5 at the Glen Annie Golf Club in Goleta.
“Nick made a lasting impression with anyone who came into contact with him,” UCSB water polo coach Wolf Wigo said. “His enthusiasm for life was contagious. This event is important to keep his legacy alive and help sustain his scholarship for future student-athletes.”
The tournament, which honors the memory of former Gaucho and Santa Barbara High water polo player Nick Johnson, is a scramble format. Registration, bag drop and driving range opportunities begin at 11:30 a.m. There will be a shotgun start at 12:30 p.m. and lunch will be served on the course.
Following the end of play, there will be a dinner and awards presentation to be held at 5:30 p.m.
The weekend will also serve as a 40th Anniversary celebration for the 1979 Men’s Water Polo NCAA Champions. Stay tuned to UCSBGauchos.com for more information.
The following day, Sun., Oct. 6, the UCSB men’s water polo team will take on USC at Campus Pool at noon, followed by the Alumni Game at 2 p.m.
There are numerous sponsorship opportunities available for the golf tournament including: carts, foursomes, holes and individuals. For more information on sponsorships or to sign-up for the tournament, go to UCSBGauchos.com or contact Mia Weber at 805-893-4785 or at Mia.Weber@athletics.ucsb.edu.