Winning team of John Weddle and James fry from Columbus East with boat captain Bryan Caudill from Columbus East H.S.
On May 22 the Costa Bassmaster Bass Nation High School Series hosted the state qualifier tournament on Lake Monroe. Participants came from all across the state to take on the challenge that is Monroe. Teams came from as far away as River Forest in the North and Lawrenceburg to the South. In all, 37 two man boats from twelve different schools made up the field with another 3 boats competing in the junior class.
The team of Hardin and Pollert, from Columbus East, took home the win in the junior class with one fish at 2.5 pounds. George Beiderhake and Blake Buddenberg, of Lawrenceburg finished in 3rd place with a two fish total of 5.25 pounds. Caitlin Schilling and Andrew Carr of South Putnam weighed in a second place total of 6.78 pounds with Caitlin also claiming big fish at 4.62 pounds. Schilling found her success on a green pumpkin tube jig.
Caitlin Schilling from South Putnam H.S. caught the biggest bass of the tournament
The winning boat of John Weddle and James Fry, from Columbus East, weighed in at 6.86 pounds. When asked what the key to their success was they replied “No trolling motor!” Early into the day the trolling motor on their boat gave out and they had to rely on the skills of their boat captain, Bryan Caudill, to put them on the fish using only the big motor and a lot of strategic drifting. The Olympians from Columbus East relied on a Ned rig to entice their catch.
A special award for sportsmanship was awarded to the team from Roncalli. Anthony Moore and Chris Dobbs gave up valuable competition time to help rescue a boat in distress. While on the water they encountered a sinking boat and towed the boat and passengers to safety. Their efforts did not go unnoticed and were greatly appreciated.
The series moves on to Geist Reservoir the 26th of June and the state championship is July 16th & 17th on Monroe. Troy Gorham, series director, thanked sponsors Honey Creek Tackle, Accent Fishing Products, Bass Boat Saver, Tall Tails Bait & Tackle, and Hawgback Lures for their efforts in insuring the future of the sport by supporting high school fishing.
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