If you missed the 2009 East Meets West then you missed one of the most epic battles of SKATE we've ever seen. 108 skaters went head to head until there was only one guy left. In the end, it was Doug Nehrenz from Sheffield Lake beating out Ryan Rosinski (Streetsboro) and Mike Simon (Twinsburg). The final match pitted the 3 finalists against each other. By the finals, each skater was exhausted from the 6 matches they each needed to win to get here.
But the road to the finals would hold several of the most intense battles. Mike Simon and Lukas Schepers, an exchange student from Germany living in Mentor, went through an ungodly amount of tricks with both skaters at "T" until MIke finally nabbed it. Yet the most intense match of the day BY FAR was the 3 way match between Doug Nehrenz, Johnny Grogan (Eastlake) and last year's winner Chris McHugh (Willoughby). Johnny hung on matching Doug and Chris's tricks but was finally knocked out on the backside 360 ollie kickflip. After that Doug and Chris laid down some of the toughest tricks you could do these days. The match continued as the sun started to dip behind the buildings. But after a few misses trying to set Doug up with a backside 540 big flip, Chris would lose on Doug's backside double kickflip. The crowd was hyped through the entire match and this video will get a lot of replays until next year.
In Photo (L to R): JaOvvoni Garrison (lurking), Terry Shebestak, Chris McHugh, Vince Frantz, Councilman Tony Brancatelli, Johnny Grogan, Mike Simon (3rd), Doug Nehrenz (1st), Lukas Schepers, Ryan Rosinski (2nd).
This event was a collaboration between Public Square Group, Slavic Village Skateboarding, and Slavic Village Development Corporation. This event would not have been possible without the support of the Cleveland Police, Stella Walsh Rec center and the people of the Slavic Village neighborhood. Special thanks to Chuck Gliha from Broadway Public Art for signage and event setup, Jacob Van Sickle, Emily Miller and the rest of the SVD staff for their support of skateboarding and this event.