Montgomery, Texas’ Lake Creek High School Leads Wire-to-Wire to Win 2022 High School Fishing National Championship

Montgomery, Texas’ Lake Creek High School Leads Wire-to-Wire to Win 2022 High School Fishing National Championship

Student Anglers Fallon Clepper and Wyatt Ford Claim Title with Three-Day Total of Nine Bass Weighing 39-9

June 27, 2022

FLORENCE, Ala. – The Lake Creek High School duo of Fallon Clepper and Wyatt Ford, both of Montgomery, Texas, brought a final day limit to the scale Saturday weighing 12 pounds, 14 ounces to win the 2022 High School Fishing National Championship on Pickwick Lake in Florence, Alabama. Clepper became the first female to ever win the High School Fishing National Championship.

The duo’s three-day total of nine bass weighing 39 pounds, 9 ounces, earned them the victory by a 5-pound, 5-ounce margin over the runner-up, New Hampshire’s Keene High School, and earned the duo thousands of dollars in prizes and scholarship offers – including a four-year $80,000 offer to California’s Simpson University and a four-year $100,000 offer to attend Kentucky Christian University. The duo also now advances to the 2022 Toyota Series Championship, held Nov. 3-5 on Lake Guntersville in Guntersville, Alabama, to compete as co-anglers and a shot at the top prize of a new Phoenix 518 Pro boat with a 115-horsepower Mercury outboard.

Going into the third and final day of competition, Clepper and Ford held just a 1-ounce lead on their competition.

“I was nervous at takeoff,” Clepper said. “I thought we were going to get gapped by everybody, but when we got to our spot there was only one other boat there.”

Leaning on sage advice from their captain, Julian Clepper — Fallon’s father — the team weathered wracked nerves to boat a 12-pound bag on the final day for the win.

“We stayed on our juice the entire time today,” Ford said. “That was the only spot we consistently caught fish over 2 pounds, so we figured we would try to win it all and stay there all day.”

It didn’t take long for the team to launch themselves into serious contention for the crown on the final day.

At 6:40 a.m., Ford plunged a Zoom Trick Worm to the bottom of Pickwick Lake ledge on a shaky head jig. Its hook connected with a Tennessee River stud, and seconds later, a 7-pound, 8-ounce largemouth crashed into the net held by his teammate’s father.

“I was thinking that we had been here before,” said Ford, a soft-spoken football tight end who kept his composure throughout the event. “I knew if we got it in the boat that we might have a shot.”

The fish was the largest landed in a tournament featuring 236 boats competing in the 2022 High School Fishing National Championship. Combined with a pair of quality keepers from teammate Fallon Clepper, the Pickwick kicker was enough to outpace the pack and land the duo high school fishing’s highest honor.

In the process, Clepper, who started fishing competitively with her father at 11 years old, became the first female angler to ever win the High School Bass Fishing National Championship.

“I want to see more girls out here getting in it,” she said. “Just because a boy says you can’t do it doesn’t mean you can’t. Just keep after them.”

In a tournament fought out mostly under bluebird skies, slow current and brutal summer heat, Clepper and Ford’s single honey hole was productive enough to get the job done.

“When we found the spot in practice, we drove over it with the graphs and saw a really big school of fish,” Ford said. “It was like something we had never seen before.”

Clepper and Ford began fishing together when their parents, who were childhood friends, reconnected at a meet-the-teacher event during their freshman year.

“I asked him if he was going to fish,” Clepper said. “He said ‘yes’ and that he didn’t have a partner, so we ended up together ever since then.”

Three years later, the two fishing-forged friends stood together on stage with one of bass fishing’s most famous rivers as a backdrop. At their feet lay massive checks and scholarship offers. The two most coveted trophies in high school bass fishing were hoisted above their heads. And in the crowd, a pair of overjoyed parents cheered feverishly for their kids.

“It doesn’t even seem real right now,” Clepper said. “I feel like I am in a dream. I have always dreamed of this day and it finally came true.”

The Top 10 teams at the 2022 High School Fishing National Championship on Lake Pickwick finished:

  • 1st: Lake Creek High School, Montgomery, Texas – Fallon Clepper and Wyatt Ford, nine bass, 39-9
  • 2nd: Keene High School, Keene, N.H. – Bradyn Antosiewicz and Connor Holbrook, nine bass, 34-4
  • 3rd: Owatonna High School, Owatonna, Minn. – Walker Krampitz and Brady Matz, nine bass, 32-5
  • 4th: Northeast Louisiana High School Anglers – Ian Carter and Colby Dark, nine bass, 32-3
  • 5th: Fairview High School, Fairview, Ala. – Levi Harris and Zane Roberts, nine bass, 31-15
  • 6th: Alcoa Fishing Team, Alcoa, Tenn. – Walker LaRue and Joe Vaulton, nine bass, 31-9
  • 7th: Calvary Baptist Academy, Shreveport, La. – Noah Trant and Mark Andrew Trant, nine bass, 29-2
  • 8th: Osseo High School, Osseo, Minn. – Jackson Betker and Kenrick Kisch, nine bass, 28-9
  • 9th: Central High School, Martinsburg, Pa. – Gerald Brumbaugh and Dalton Metzger, nine bass, 28-9
  • 10th: Benton High School, Benton, La. – Zachary Halbert and Gray Allums, seven bass, 25-9

Complete results for the entire field can be found at

13th Annual High School Fishing World Finals & National Championship getting down to the wire

On Tuesday June 21, 2022 when on sight check in was finalized in Florence, Alabama a whopping 416 teams from 40 states (including Hawaii) and 2 teams from as far away as Zimbabwe, South Africa were on sight for the record breaking event.

This 2 in 1 event combines the WORLD FINALS and the High School National Championship into one family friendly event,  with more than 2.6 MILLION dollars in scholarship offers and prizes up for grabs.

You can see a flow chart of the format and how the event works by Clicking Here this unique format was built on feedback from the families and parents at previous years  events and has proven itself as a level playing field and a popular event.

Because the event is held in the summer time each year so families can vacation around it,  SAF imposed a 3 fish limit per team per day for conservation to help put the fish back alive in hotter weather. A 3 fish limit also greatly helps to even the playing field with anglers form so many states attending.

Day 1 saw a Texas team jump to the top of the leaderboard in both the world and National Standings. Fallon Clepper and Wyatt Ford brought in 3 fish for 18.08 ounces to hold their lead firmly on day 1.

Day 2 Clepper and Ford only weighed in 8.03 ounces for 26-11 but it was enough to hang onto their lead by a mere one ounce over Bradyn Antosiewick and Conner Holbrook  a team all the way from New Hampshire who wound up with a two day total of 26-10. third place was held down by Kade Surratt and Hunter Brewer from Tennessee with 25-11.

Friday day 3 is JUDGEMENT day! – The top 10 in the National Championship standings compete for the title and scholarship offers to the National Champions.  All 10 of those finalist advance to Saturday Final day of the WORLD FINALS.  Then 20 more will be added to the final day mix via the WORLD Semifinals. (top 2 from each states) through the Second Chance round all other anglers.  This event is a double elimination just like almost other High School sports to get to the finals.


full results and info can be found here.

Nichols and Unger win Championship at Lewis & Clark Lake

The 2022 Nebraska SAF State Championship was held on Lewis & Clark Lake in Crofton, NE. Matthew Nichols and Ryan Unger with McCook High School, took 1st place with a five fish limit weighing 13 pounds 10 ounces. In 2nd place was Gothenburg Bassmasters, Ty Kreis and Braeden Anderson with five fish that weighed 12 pounds 2 ounces. Rounding out the top 3 teams was Austen Madsen and Logan Greeno, Holdredge Duster Bass Club, with 11 pounds 13 ounces. For full results CLICK HERE.