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Alms, Layer, Kemper earn nominations

Paige Alms and Albee Layer of Haiku were nominated for World Surf League Big Wave Awards in overall performance on Monday, and Billy Kemper, also of Haiku, was named one of the finalists for the wipeout award.

The performance awards, which come with a prize of $5,000, recognize “outstanding performances in the most diverse number of venues” and “a high level of excellence in water safety leadership.”

Alms earned a wild-card spot in November’s Target Maui Pro at Honolua Bay and reached the second round of the main event.

Layer was an alternate on the invitee list for the Quiksilver in Memory of Eddie Aikau big-wave event.

Alms is nominated along with two Oahu surfers – Keala Kennelly, the defending champion, and Emi Erickson – as well as California’s Jamilah Star, a two-time winner, and Brazil’s Silvia Nabuco.

The other men’s performance award nominees are Oahu’s Maku-akai Rothman, a former Big Wave champion, and Trevor Carlson, plus Shane Dorian of the Big Island and Grant Baker of South Africa.

Kemper’s wipeout recognition is from a session at Puerto Escondido, Mexico, in July. Also up for the award are Brazil’s Marcio Freire for a tumble at Peahi – also known as “Jaws” – in January, a double wipeout by Australia’s Jamie Mitchell and California’s Chapman Murphy at the California spot “Mavericks” in December, Australia’s Marcio Freire for a wipeout in his home country in August and France’s Benjamin Sanchis for a wipeout in Portugal in December.

The wipeout award winner will receive $2,000.

Other award finalists were announced in March, and include two waves caught at Jaws on Nov. 12 – by Dorian for the Billabong Ride of the Year, and by Baker for the Paddle Award.

Winners will be announced May 1 at an event in Anaheim, Calif.