A big thank you to Hawaii Skin Diver for the long time support of our sport and industry and their tireless effort to create the top dive Magazine in the world.
Copper State Freedivers
Joe Scheurn is a diver from Arizona. I spent summers as a kid spearing in Southern California and that’s where I gained an appreciation for diving. Since then He has been lucky enough to spear lots of fun locations throughout the U.S. and Mexico. He is married with 4 kids and work full time as a firefighter.
Clinton Moran has been spearfishing for a few years all over the country. Whether it is shooting striped bass off Block Island or wahoo in Mexico he enjoys every minute of diving with his buddies. Clinton currently resides in Charleston South Carolina where he is a professor of fish physiology at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina and the College of Charleston. He is looking forward to contributing to the eradication of the invasive common carp in the Southwestern United States. BIIIIIIIIIIG Threeeeeeee
Mesa, Arizona 37 yrs old Living in Arizona a land locked state, He started learning how to spearfish six years ago in freshwater. He quickly realized that it was something he wanted to pursue and get better at. He has had the opportunity to spearfish in La Paz Mexico, San Diego California, Puerto Penasco Mexico, and a bunch of lakes and rivers around Arizona and Nevada. He’s excited to compete in the Fresh Water Nationals.
Reason for competing again this year?? Not sure.
This will be my third nationals since stating that I was retiring,,,,, oh well. Mike Ban forced me to enter again this year in an attempt to put the team on the podium as champion, so here we go again. Just kidding. Mike and I work really well as team mates, and this year we have the striper legend Paul Young as our 3rd, so we’ll see if we can keep him inline and performing!! Always great to see everyone at these tournaments, and I look forward to a great game and lots of fun.
I look forward to teaming up with my longtime teammate Dennis Haussler. Bringing on a new partner, Paul Young even though he’s old school. With this solid team we hope to make a little bit of noise in this year’s Nationals. Good luck to all the competitors dive safe
Paul young – Cencal
42 yrs old
10x US National Competitor
2018 “Team USA” World competitor -Portugal
2016 USOA Athlete of the Year
2016 US National Champions
4x Pacific Coast Champions
Cencal Diver of the Year
Thank you to my sponsors Freedive Shop, Rob Allen, Meister diving ,Surf fur … I’m looking forward to diving with the legends Dennis “the gimp” Haussler and Mike “donkey patrol” Ban. Road dawgs + aquaman are ready to roll. Hopefully our years of freshwater diving will pay off. Wishing all the competitors good luck and safe diving.
While I have been spearfishing off and on for over 20 years, I have really grown to love the sport as a freediver during more recent years. I love heading down on our yearly spearfishing trip to Mexico with my family and friends (Mike Kennedy, Mike Livingston and Ben Brown). I have also ventured out to many new freshwater lakes over the past years for spearfishing, which has been inspired by RMSA tournaments. I have participated in Top Dawg 2018, two Fish Lake tournaments and the US Freshwater tournament in 2018.
I live in St. George, UT with my adventurous wife Megan and our four kids, Maya, Ian, Jocelynn and Jake. Maya will be diving in the mixed division this year with her buddy Clay. I am excited for some great diving this year with friends and family!
My name is Mike Kennedy I was born in Provo, Utah. My love for fishing started when I was really young, we where camping and we only had 3 fishing poles; 1 for my dad and each of my older brothers. I cried because I didn’t get to have one, my mom told me to find a stick and some of the extra string by the river. We added a hook and dug up my own worms, and I ended up catching more fish then my Dad and my two older brother, so needless to say I was hooked to fishing that day forward. When I was about 20 we went camping at Flaming Gorge. My older brother Aaron was Scuba Certified and asked me if I wanted to go down with him, I said, “yes”. He tucked me under his right arm and gave me his emergency air and we went down. I could see everything, where the fish liked to hang out, what they where doing, what their habitat looked like, I was hooked. So I had to go and get Scuba Certified, not too much time longer I met Kenny Western who asked if I wanted to try spearfishing with Hawaiian slings at Deer Creek. We went to Deer Creek and it was so much fun, it was hard to get a fish with 5 foot slings but it was a blast. Then I purchased my 1st speargun a JBL it could shoot like 6 feet so much fun. I Later got married to my wife Meagan and her brother invited me to Mexico, I went with him down the Baja and went scuba diving and spearfishing. Instead of 7 to 12 foot visibility I could see 35 to 50 feet it was amazing and beautiful and big fish. The next year I told Kenny and he came with me and we did the same speared lots of fish and had lots of fun. The 3rd year someone stopped us and told us that it was illegal to Scuba Dive and Spearfish in Mexico so we started holding our breaths and going down like 15 feet shooting fish and feeling like studs. When I got home I started to Google, “How to Hold Your Breath”. I studied lots of chats and then also found that there was an app for that. I remember reaching 2 mins then 2:25 and thinking this is amazing. The next year when we went to Mexico I was diving 35 feet it was even more amazing, then I learned about carbon fiber fins and the next year I was shooting down to 60 feet, I loved it and my whole diving life became a drug that I didn’t want to stop. Someone then invited me to a spearfishing tournament at Starvation Reservoir, and I have been hooked ever since.
I got started into spearfishing about 8 years ago. My good friend Mike Kennedy invited me and a couple other buddies (Kenny Western and Ben Brown) on a fishing trip down to Baja Mexico. I knew virtually nothing about the sport but quickly fell in love with the rush of hunting fish. Every year since the “Bahia Bros” have made a trip down to the beautiful Sea of Cortez waters to hunt for big slobs. My goals for the sport are to continue to advocate for better and more sustainable fishing practices and continue to educate and introduce others to it. I want to keep improving and pushing myself to dive deeper, last longer and push the limits of my own abilities.
I reside in Saratoga Springs, Utah with my beautiful wife Lindsey and four children (Tyler, Bailey, Kyle, Emery). I work in the environmental services business helping companies get rid of their hazardous waste. I love anything outdoors, hunting, camping, and of course spearfishing any chance I get. I love the wonderful opportunities that Spearfishing has afforded me along with the many great associations and friendships that I am making along the way.
9th Island Spearfishing
Aloha, my name is Courtney Esprecion, I am fortunate and blessed to be competing in my 4th US National Spearfishing competition with Matt Suiter and Vernon Taketa. I enjoy long walks on the beach and any outdoor activity. Hahaha 🙂 I would like to thank my girlfriend Denise, our 2 daughters, family and friends for their continued love and support. Good luck to this years competitors! Dive safe and have fun!!!
I’m a Las Vegas Real Estate agent who was born in San Diego. My parents were both military so we bounced around from Hawaii to Southern California when I was very young until we eventually settled in Las Vegas. I have always been into water sports from surfing to scuba diving and snorkeling. I started dabbling with spearfishing in the Vegas area a few years ago and started competing about that time as well. Since I’m not able to get to the ocean everyday spearfishing in the Lake and River here in Vegas with my Dad and buddies at “9th Island Spearfishing” is a great consultation prize that keeps my sane. #WhiteOrca
Aloha to all my fellow spearo competitors, competing in this years US Nationals. My name is Vernon Takata and this will be my 4th US Nationals. I have the honor of being Courtney Esprecion and Matt suiter teammate.
It is an honor to be representing the 9th Island Las Vegas in this years Nationals. I am also a member of Ali’i Holo Kai dive club.
Thank you to my teammates, for all the hard work and scouting you guys did. Thank you to Zachary Ohara of Mares, for the sponsorship of great spearfishing gear. Thank you God for the blessing you have given me, to be blessed to be a part of the 2019 Us Nationals.
Last but not least thank you to my wife, kids and ohana for supporting me in all that I do.
Aloha and God bless
I started spearfishing in the croc infested freshwater lakes of Zimbabwe, Africa. I immigrated to the USA at age 15 and was able to continue on my spearfishing adventures seven years later. I met Mike McGuire during a free diving class at University and he immediately got me into competitive spearfishing, I never looked back. I enjoy the peace of mind that free diving gives me, and the opportunity to compete against people from around the world. I have since competed in multiple National competitions as well as the 2017 World Tournament at Lake Mead, Nevada. I look forward to meeting everyone and best of luck to you all!
Duke is excited to be part of this tournament again, and feels weird writing about himself in the 3rd person. He loves the sport and, like everyone, tries to get out diving as much as he can. Duke has been with the RMSA since the beginning and says his favorite part is seeing some of the original members children, brothers and sisters diving and competing. He appreciates all the work the councils put into the sport and tournaments and hope others do as well.
He looks forward to seeing old and new friends alike, and wishes all teams the best of luck!
I was born and raised in Colorado as an avid hunter and fisherman. While I was in college, I was fortunate enough to meet Mike Mcguire who threw me into diving and eventually competitive spearfishing. Since my first spearfishing tournament almost two years ago, I have developed a passion for the sport. I look forward to furthering my knowledge and abilities as I compete for many years to come
Kona Coast Spearfishing Team #1
Kona Coast Spearfishing
Mikhail Kuznetsov is a person that was born in Novorossiysk, Russia as a part of the Black Sea. He is 4 times Spearfishing Champion of Russia. He has huge worldwide spearfishing experience at World and Euro-African Championships. Now he live in Florida and continues competing with best US divers. Best results are top 5 at 2014 US National Hawaii, 2017 California.
Aloha competitors, happy to be here and share great stories and meet new competitors. I learn more about spearfishing every year at these freshwater championships. Im excited to dive wit two great spearfishermen from florida as my teamates Andrew and Mikhail. We hope to do well. I hope to help bring a national title wit this great team. The past nationals i had wit a great team also brought me 5 Team Championships and 2 Individual titles. We have world class divers this year, wish all competitors best of luck. I would like to thank my sponsors: Rob Allen U.S.A, Meister specialized diving gear,Hawaii Fishing News,Sportube,Yamaha Outboard Motors.
Andrew Geist is both a state and national champion. 2 time U.S national individual vice champion(1999 and 2001),
2 time Florida state vice champion, 1997 Florida team champion, 2001 U.S. national team champion, and three time all American free diver.
He has represented the United States in 3 world championships (Tahiti 2000, Brazil 2002, and Greece 2016). USOA spearfishing athlete of the year 2001. Good luck to all and dive safe!
Aloha, I’m Jon Barretto! I was Born & raised on The island of Kauai in Hawaii. This will be my 6th US Nationals. I look forward to catching up with OLD friends & meeting new ones. Safe diving to everyone! 🤙🏼
I’ve been spearfishing since I was around 10 years old. I started competing around 2010 and have never stopped since. I’m excited to compete in this years fresh water nationals representing Omer America and also representing my home Hawai’i
Howzit This Is Marnie Balubar all the way from the island of Oahu, Hawaii!!! This will be my first time diving in fresh water. Hopefully it won’t be the last!!!
Good luck to all the competitors and dive safe.
Team Rob Allen
I was born into a diving family that loved to camp, dive, and take game along the Western coast of the US and into Mexico. My brother Glen and I started in fresh water river competitions over 45 years ago and have been blessed with many great experiences at a national and world level. I now enjoy giving back to the sport through the fresh water meets we hold in the mid west. Getting my daughter and son involved at a young age and seeing them grow to be strong and safe divers has been the most exciting thing for me over these last few years. Although I am still adjusting to having them beat me for big fishing in competitions Hope to see you all in Beaver lake Arkansas next year Aug 3-7 for Fresh Water Nationals and then Aug of 2021 for Freshwater Worlds, also in Beaver Lake. Fresh Water Rocks!
Aloha ! The sport of spearfishing has given me some of my fondest memories. I’m looking forward to a fabulous experience and to share my aloha with everyone. I want to thank all the hands that put this competition together.
Please dive safe and have a wonderful time.
Mahalo, Bruce Ayau
Hana is a native Hawaiian, Raised on the north shore in big waves, Hana did a lot of big wave surfing. In the diving world Hana quickly be came an all star. He is very instinctive with any waters and fish. In the US we hunt a 5 region circuit in all types of waters and fish, Hana is among the best divers, in any water, the US has ever had. in 2009 he became the AOY, the top athlete diver in all the United States. In 2011 he focused on freshwater and by 2013, 2014, 2015 Nation-International events, he was winning everything. Hana and Calvin are the 2013 defending National Champs in lake mead. This is the only big meet ever held in Lake Mead and they each shot over 100 fish. Hana brings a fun easy going Hawaiian style to these events and knows how to turn it on when it comes to winning big and coming from behind. We are honored to dive with such great friends and competitors like him. Mahalo
Osmanis Perez has been competing for the past 4 years ,he was also no last years second place team.
Lazaro Cabrera is a commercial spearfisherman and was also on last years second place team at nationals. he has been competing for the past 10 years.
Jose Santeiro has been competing for over 20 years and was on last years second place team at nationals.
Look who we brought back from New Zealand with us! We are thrilled to have Darren Shields back at Lake Mead and diving with us! Watch out- he’ll eat all the fish in the lake!
Darren Shields is the owner of Wettie Spearfishing, an Auckland, New Zealand company specializing in exceptional freediving gear. Darren is a very accomplished international competitor, underwater videographer. He dove Lake Mead in the 2017 Freshwater World’s, and he directed the 2019 World’s in NZ.
Anne lives in Massachusetts, and dives 7 months a year in Rhode Island. Anne competed on the Women’s team in the 2004 World Championships in Iquique, Chile and at the WFSC in New Zealand this year. She has competed in international meets in Norway and Mexico, as well as numerous local and national meets.
Brandi hails from the frigid waters of Northern California. She has participated in numerous Central California Council of Dive Club and local spearfishing tournaments, USA National competitions, a World Cup in Mexico, several ‘Diving for A Cause trips’ and along with Anne, was on the first Women’s Team USA in Iquique, Chile 2004, and the WFSC New Zealand 2019. Throughout, she has striven to be positive role model for women in all aspects of the sport – sportsmanship, safety, advocacy, stewardship, appreciation, fun and more – and hopes to inspire more women to enjoy the adventures and wonderment that only freediving and spearfishing holds.
I grew up spearfishing on the West coast of Florida and was fortunate enough to have my parents as spearfishing mentors. I actually was spearing fish before I could ride a bike circa 1965. Mybuddies and I spearfished mainly out of Tarpon Springs Florida and also in Tampa Bay, The Florida Keys, and Bahamas. We mostly used tanks back in those early days and I never knew much about freediving. We used to joke around and say we were the Red Tide Dive Team because we killed more fish than the Red Tide.Over the years I have become a seasoned international diver ravelling all over the world in search of big fish. I have competed in and won countless spearfishing tournaments at the local, nationaland international levels. Winning the World’s Largest Spearfishing Tournament; The Saint Pete Open, The USOA National Championships and The FSDA Florida State Spearfishing Championships have been my biggest wins for both me and my team. Other important tournament wins include The Lapaz World Cup Invitational, The Key West Open, The Southern Open StateSpearfishing Championships, and The FSDA West Coast Council Tournament Series. The knowledge learned from these competitions is priceless and have made me a much better spero.I was awarded The Florida Skindivers Association “Norm Wyman Poppa Taylor Award for sportsmanship and contribution to our sport. It was truly an honor and I am to this day humbled tohave my name on this perpetual trophy. I have owned and operated Red Tide Spearfishing since 2008. This business venture has given me a platform to design, manufacture and distribute my own brand of spearfishing gear. You can see my Red Tide Spearfishing Gear at redtidespearfishing.com and at quality spearfishing dive shops worldwide.
He is competing in his 7th nationals and is excited to see new and old faces. He is a 3 time national team champion 06, 15 and 18 and a 2-time vice champion in 15 and 18. Ritchie has won numerous tournaments around the country and has held 4 IUSA world records. He has been known to drink many beers the night before tournaments just to warm up for the rigorous diving day ahead.
Its only been a few years (4 or 5) since Mile Kennedy and Mike Livingston convinced me to go on a deepsea fishing trip with them down to the Baja. Man did we have fun dragging our lines behind the boat. But then, Mike convinced me to invest in a speargun, and we have not ever looked back. Now I dream of being on the bottom of the ocean, lake, pond or wherever, on the hunt. There is just nothing like it. I live in American Fork, Utah with my wife, and 4 kids. I am super excited to be diving with my son in the nationals this year. He is just getting into the sport, but watch out, he is good at anything he sets his mind to.
Ethan is 16 years old this year and he is so excited to compete in his first tournament. When he’s not working he likes to hike, camp swim, bike, or just hang out with his friends.
I competed a lot when i was younger but stopped competing due to work commitments for 10+ years. I just got back into competitive spearfishing again 3 years ago and have won 3 national titles and 1 world.
This year i am looking forward to diving with my son Angus and helping him get started which will make for probably my most memorable competition to date.
I started spearfishing about 2 years ago with my Dad when i was 4. There are no safe fish in the lake when I’m around.
I’m super pumped to be diving my first USA nationals.
Kona Coast Free Divers Council
I was born and raised in the Big Island of Hawaii. My first diving experience was when I was 7 years old and I have been hooked ever since. I have never been a competitive diver until recently. I primarily dive for the table on the Hamakua coast with my wife Johnelle. I have had the great pleasure of diving with many of the great Hawaiian divers over the years. To them I owe my knowledge of the water.
I am an American Red Cross Lifeguard Instructor, United States Army Veteran, a second degree Black Belt in Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. Currently I serve as Executive Director of the BJ Penn Hawaii Youth Foundation.
Aloha. My name’s Johnelle Beach. I was born & raised in Hawaii. I live on the big island. I’ve been diving since I was a kid. But had only started taking it seriously at the age of 18. I’ve been diving primarily with my husband for about 14 years. & this will be our first tournament.
Kona Coast Spearfishing Division
aka #Jleestories is exactly that!!! A story teller!! Not too much of a diver but loves it all the same. Smiles a lot and is a great guy to share an elevator with. Justin is looking forward to seeing everyone again and competing shoulder to shoulder with some of best humans around.
Good luck everyone!! Dive safe and shoot um all in the face!!
Kiley is the Queen of Aimrite USA and if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask her.
aka Kiley Monster is exactly that!! She’s a little monster that shoots stuff in the face. With a mile long list of spearfishing accolades there’s one thing missing, and that’s a freshwater spearfishing competition. Kiley is looking forward to the challenges of trying to reload her speargun a 1000 times and paying for her trip on the craps table. What she lacks in height she makes up for by being a true bad A$$!!
I am 17 years old and live in St. George, UT. I have not been spearfishing for very long, but I absolutely love it! Last year I competed in the 2018 US Freshwater competition. I had a lot of fun and won first in the junior division. I have also competed in Top Dawg and in the Fish Lake competition. I am so excited for the adventures the Lake Mead competition will bring. Being able to come with friends and family will be an amazing experience.
Clay Palmer, is 16 years old. Clay goes to Lone Peak High School, is on their soccer team. He is very creative. He enjoys landscape design. Clay is a real outdoorsman. He enjoys hunting with his Uncle Mike Kennedy. His Uncle Mike is the one who introduced him to freediving and spearfishing. Clay has worked really hard this last year and purchased all of his own gear himself.
Freshwater Fish Slayers
Ryan Peterson has been spearfishing for 7 years. He currently holds two IUSA world records. He is the president of a spearfishing group called Fresh Water Fish Slayers in Utah. His group encourages safe, fun, and lawful diving and is open to anyone. He is competing with his dive partner and wife of 4 years Shelby Peterson. Together they won 2nd place as a mixed team in the 2017 Freshwater Nationals in Nebraska and won 1st place in the 2018 Freshwater Nationals in Utah. They also placed 3rd as a mixed team at the first World Freshwater Spearfishing Championship in Las Vegas, NV in 2017, and had the pleasure of competing in the second one in Lake Taupo, New Zealand in 2019. Ryan is passionate about spearfishing and is always ready to get in the water and slay some fish.
Shelby Peterson has been spearfishing for 5 years. She currently holds 3 IUSA women’s world records. She dives with Ryan Peterson her dive partner and husband of 4 years. Together they won 2nd place as a mixed team in the 2017 Freshwater Nationals in Nebraska and won 1st place in the 2018 Freshwater Nationals in Utah. They also placed 3rd as a mixed team at the first World Freshwater Spearfishing Championship in Las Vegas, NV in 2017. She individually won 1st place woman at both 2017 and 2018 National tournaments as well as taking 3rd place woman in the world’s tournament in Las Vegas, NV, and had the pleasure of competing in the second one held in Lake Taupo New Zealand in 2019. She is always excited to go spearfishing and compete, and hopes to make a name for herself among woman divers.
Ryan Myers grew up fishing and diving in South Florida. After studying Marine Biology at Florida Tech, he began traveling the world in search of remote locations and record fish. His travels have taken him to over 30 countries in the last 5 years. Ryan has been the United States number one ranked competitive spearfisherman for the past 5 consecutive years and is the 2017 U.S. spearfishing National Champion. Ryan has represented Team USA at the past four International CMAS events. He regularly speaks at expos, club meetings, and universities. Ryan is also an accomplished competition free diver, diving to over 260 feet on a single breath. He is a U.S. Coast Guard licensed captain, PADI free dive instructor, International Spearfishing Academy course developer, 5-time spearfishing world record holder, and international spearfishing guide.
Sam Mase grew up minutes from the bay in Miami, FL where her childhood consisted of scuba diving, fishing and snorkeling the local reefs. In 2016 she graduated from University of Central Florida with a degree in Environmental Policy and began working and traveling with Ryan Myers Expeditions as an adventure photographer. On her travels in the Bahamas she discovered free diving and touched 100 feet on her first day and two days later she shot a world record yellowfin grouper. Since then she’s competed in several national and international spearfishing competitions. In 2017 she placed 2nd with her team and won biggest fish in the Freshwater Spearfishing World Championship. In 2018 she placed 1st in the mixed team division at the US national championship. This qualified her for the I CMAS Women’s World Cup where she helped Team USA win 1st place and set a precedent for the US women’s team on the international stage. Over the years, spearfishing and free diving has taken Sam to over 20 different countries as she travels full time diving and photographing the world’s oceans.
I was born into a diving family and being a McGuire I didn’t have much of a choice in not learning how to spearfish from a young age. This is my third year of competing nationally and internationally. I’m excited to have Cam all the way from New Zealand be my partner and can’t wait to have a fun time diving in this meet.
I started spearfishing five years ago and have loved it ever since. Have only seriously competed a couple times and lake Mead will be my first international competition. I am very excited to compete against new people from around the world who share the same passion as me.
Representing the spearfishing community in the Rocky Mountain Region since 2008