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Pitz enjoys the ride

Surfing standout, who will be a junior at Laguna Beach High, is putting finishing touches on a busy summer.

August 21, 2009|By Matt Szabo

Taylor Pitz has had her driver’s license for less than a month.

It’s a practical thing for Pitz, 16, more than most teenagers. She may enjoy cruising the town, but now she can drive to various beaches around Southern California.

“It’s nice being able to drive yourself, especially to the beach and stuff,” she said. “It’s definitely different, though. I feel a lot older.”

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In terms of surfing, she’s been quite grown for some time now. Yes, Pitz should get better at driving, but when she hits the water it’s her chance to really show off.

The Laguna Beach High junior-to-be and standout surfer is in the midst of a competition a weekend. Pack up the car with the longboards and head out, which is the life of a PacSun USA Surf Team member.

Last weekend, it was a Supergirl Pro Junior event in Carlsbad, where Pitz made it to the semifinals.

This weekend, back to Carlsbad for the first Surfing America Prime event of the season.

Then, there’s the SIMA Surfing America USA Championships, which begin Wednesday at the Huntington Beach Pier.

Oh yeah, and earlier this summer, she went on a Bali surf trip through her sponsor, Billabong, and ripped in the U.S. Open.

Big-time events for the girl who might have carried on a tradition on the pitch, not in the waves.

“My dad [Mark] grew up in Laguna but he didn’t surf growing up,” she said. “My dad’s side of the family, their big thing was soccer. They were all into soccer, so they were all hoping when I was little that I was going to play soccer. But I was never really into it. When I was little, I was actually super ‘girlie’ and I just wanted to dance and play with Barbies.”

Then, when she was in fourth grade, Pitz found out about a church surf camp, through Laguna Presbyterian. She said a bunch of her friends were signed up and she decided to give it a go.

“I did that for a couple of summers and really liked it, and then in seventh grade I just decided that I really liked surfing,” Pitz said. “I kind of just made that my focus.”

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