Street League 2012 Ontario Preview

June 12, 2012

The Street League continues its nationwide tour this weekend in Ontario, California, with another action-packed event featuring the world’s best skateboarders.

Qualifiers will take place on Friday, June 15, at the Citizens Business Bank Arena in which all 24 skateboarders will compete.  The competition will then continue on Saturday, June 16, for the semi-finals and finals with the top scoring pros competing for prize money and the chance to be named a Street League winner.

In addition to the $150,000 prize, the pro with the highest scored trick or run of the day will be granted an additional $10,000. After the finals, all pros will be invited back on the course for a 20-minute open jam session in which the judges will award $10,000 to the pro with the best jam session.

Nyjah Huston is the expected frontrunner for the Ontario event and virtually any competition he enters. The 17-year old won the first stop in Kansas and also took home an additional trick award for his Big Spin Frontside Hurricane Grind that produced a 9.4 score.

Though Huston is always a favorite to win, Bastien Salabanzi could give him a run for his money. After winning the EU Selection, the French skateboarder competed in his first Street League event and proved to be a threat against Street League veterans and past winners.

At the Kansas stop, Salabanzi and Huston battled trick-for-trick for the top spot until Salabanzi bailed on his last trick attempt and the win went to Huston.

Other pros that should not be counted out are Chaz Ortiz, Sean Malto, and Chris Cole.

Although he is one of the youngest pros, Ortiz is no stranger to skateboard contests and always gives standout performances with his technical tricks. Chaz Ortiz ended the competition in third place, holding the lead at one point following the Run section before Salabanzi and Huston eventually made their move.

Sean Malto made little impact in his hometown Kansas City this season, but the 2011 champion cannot be underestimated. Malto has been known to use his seemingly easy style and consistency to silently come out with a remarkable win.

Chris Cole is known as one of the best skateboarders in the world, but has yet to prove himself in Street League. Cole has not won a Street League event despite ending up in the top 3 on multiple occasions. Rest assured he will be gunning for the top spot in Ontario.

The key to winning Street League is consistency. The level of skill and talent is so high among these skateboarders that any one of them has the ability to turn out a huge trick or a flawless run. However, maintaining high scores throughout each section is the challenge.

With the ISX scoring technology, competitors can see their scores immediately after a run. It then boils down to who can withstand the pressure to achieve the score that he needs.  With $150,000 on the line, Street League Ontario is sure to see the pros at their best, battling to the end to clench the title of Street League winner.

By Jean Ortiz-Luis
Contributing Writer for The Daily Sports Herald

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