Daniel Kennedy and Braden Marshall knew that they had a good sack of fish but the smiling pair from Silverdale Baptist Academy had no idea that they were going over the 20 pound mark. When the scales at the jam packed Dayton Boat Dock read over 21 lbs. the pair appeared to be momentarily stunned! From there the amazement continued as their kicker fish, a 7lb 4 oz. beauty, also claimed them the Lew’s Big Bass award.
“Wow this is really something” stated Daniel who is a junior at Silverdale Baptist. “I just can’t believe that we won”. When asked how they conquered the Lake Chickamauga bass and the rest of the field Braden Marshall, who is also a junior, added “we used a shaky head brown plastic worm and fished primarily in the shallow water”. Both anglers claimed that the key to their success was sticking with their game plan and fishing through the entire 90 degree day was the key to their winning effort.
In addition to being crowned Tennessee State Championship and advancing on to the Southeast Conference Regional Championship the pair also won a $10,000 Scholarship to Bryan College which has one of the fastest growing college bass fishing teams in the country and was located just across the street from the Dayton weigh-in facility.
Kennedy and Marshall will lead a 12 team contingency from the Tennessee event to the Southeast Conference Regional Event on Lake Lanier in Gainesville Georgia in September.
Coming in second in the 124 boat field was the team of Brandsford Dean and Dustin Osborne from Rhea County High School who also had a huge sack of Chickamauga Bass that weighed in 20lbs 14 oz. to claim the runner-up spot and a berth in the fall regional.
Bradley Central High School’s team of Colton Morton and Chris Wilson claimed the third spot with a very impressive 5 fish limit that weighed in at 19lb 11oz to round out the top three in the event sponsored by the Fish Dayton group at the always popular Dayton Boat dock.
Also qualifying for the September conference championship which advances the top 10% of the field were the following teams from across the state.
4th place AJ Barnes and Gavin Ainslie from Central High School with 18lbs 3oz.
5th place Charles Woody Tristan Lowe from Polk County with 17lb 13oz.
6th place Alyssa Coleman and Erica Abigail Smith with 17lb 11oz.
7th place Landry Cooper and Cameron Kirkland from Sequoya High School with 16lb 13oz
8th place Peyton Gibbs and Condry Hyndman from Creekwood High School with 15lbs 11oz.
9th place Austin and Bryar Goins from Rhea County High School with 15lb 1oz
10th place Elijah Cartwright and Jacob Thomas from Soddy Daisy High School with 14lbs 1oz.
11th place Daniel Cheshire and Christopher Richey from Creekwood High School with 13lbs 13oz.
12th place Dylan Dunnagan and Shader Brown of Dickson County High School with 13lb 6oz.
Special thanks goes out to Dayton City Mayor Gary Louallen, Fish Dayton Director Dennis Tumlin, The Bryan College Bass Fishing team, the Tennessee Bass Federation and the Upper Cumberland High School Bass team for providing a great support team for the event.
All of the participating anglers in this event now have an opportunity to compete in the prestigious High School Fishing World Finals which will be held just across the Tennessee line in Florence Alabama the week of July 7th-11th. This event is open to all SAF anglers in the country and you can register by going to: