Little Rock Christian Academy Anglers Nesterenko & Purifoy Lead After Day 1 of 2012 High School Fishing World Finals

Today the weather was hot and the fishing was even hotter at the 2012 High School Fishing World Finals. 120 teams of competitors launched at Dardenelle State Park this morning and was heading across the water at 6am. Most of the teams we spoke with today got off to a slow start, but this awesome group of student anglers started finding their fishing patterns quickly.

Little Rock Christian Academy Sophomores Cameron Nesterenko and Trey Purifoy lead after the first day with 16lbs 8 oz. “We started off catching fish on topwater and lost a couple of key fish that really could have helped us out,” said Nesterenko. Team member Purifoy added, “When the bite got tough, we went and fished deeper water with various soft plastics to help finish off our limit.” The team seems to think they can do the same thing tomorrow and have another solid day that will hopefully solidify their spot in the top seven.

Sitting in 2nd place is the Dover, Ark. High School Fishing team of  Cody Chessher and Tara Miller with 15lbs 4 oz. “We had to wait our fish out,” said Chesser. “We are catching fish in one area moving from deep to shallow water feeding,” added Miller. The team said sitting in one location was key and not getting in a hurry. This team is catching fish using a variety of tactics such as Carolina rigs and various crankbaits.

Girls can fish too! One of the two ‘all-girl’ teams, Mikayla Scheide and Baylee Linker are sitting in 4th place! They also represent the Dover High School Fishing Club.

2012 North Carolina State Champs and the team who finished 3rd last year in the 2011 World Finals, is the brother/sister team of KJ and Chelsey Queen. Chelsey is a force to be reckoned with. She caught all their limit of fish today, which helped them finish out today in the 10th spot with 11 lbs even.

That goes to show that high school fishing is not just boys sport. Our female SAF members are serving up some tough competition this year!

Our Lews Big Bass winner today is the Arkansas Apache Anglers, Ben Meyer and Michael Henderson with a 5lb 2 oz largemouth. Lastly, we had a total of 191 bass caught today with a 97% live release rate. We have to applaud our student anglers on a job very well done on fish care in this hot Arkansas heat!

Be sure to follow along with our ‘On the Water Updates’ compliments of Ray Scheide tomorrow on Ray’s Twitter @RayScheide. And be sure to tune into the live stream, right here on

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Photos and daily updates are posted on the High School Fishing World Finals Facebook Page