July 1, 2012 – Nik Autrey, four-time state junior champion and David Slater, two-time junior champion, representing University High School Titans used there combined knowledge and experience to win the first ever Washington State High School Bass Team Championship on the Columbia River with a weight of 17.34 lbs.
They outweighed second place finishers Dakota Jones a three time State junior champion himself along with his partner Tanner Clark representing Chiawana High School River hawks with a weight of 15.75 lbs to become Washington State’s first High School Bass Team Champions.
Third place went to the team of Logan Meredith & Chase Heaton also Titan from University High School, Fourth place was Grant Green & Tristan Decker of Kamiakin High School followed by fifth place finisher Cody Brooks & Thomas Bailer of Lake Stevens High School Vikings.
The Columbia River water level was high and flowing extremely fast with large mouth at the end of their spawn guarding fry and the small mouth transitioning out from bedding areas.
All the teams seem to share some of the common areas but at different time throughout the day. First place finishers Autrey and Slater ran up the Snake River arm to begin their day early by targeting back waters off the river out of the heavy current flow. They managed to hook a few fish on top water early and then moved out to the mouth of the river pick up a 4.75lb small mouth for their biggest fish. From there they headed down river to Casey’s pond area to catch and cull fish to first place on an off shore rock pile.
Dakota Jones and Tanner Clark started at Casey’s pond targeting small mouth on roadbeds and isolated rock piles. They too later moved up river to the Yakima River arm and targeted largemouth in the shallow backwaters guarding fry to cull out a limit for a second place finish.
The rest of the five high school teams that competed worked up and down the river to upgrade their catch. It was a good turnout for the first Washington State High School Bass Team Championship, with local News coverage, and local sponsor support making it a success with the winners looking forward to the Western Conference Championship in September.
The Student Angler Federation Championship Series on July 15th with high school state championships in New York for NY and Ontario (Canada).
If you’re interested in starting a High School Fishing club at your school, please visit HighSchoolFishing.org for details on the Student Angler Federation (SAF). Cost is only $25/ year and includes full TBF and FLW Outdoors benefits, including access to the all-new FLW Outdoors Magazine e-Edition and insurance coverage for students and their club.
The winning two-person team from each state championship will advance to an FLW Outdoors/TBF High School Fishing Conference Championship held in conjunction with a National Guard FLW College Fishing Conference Championship. Those winners will advance to the FLW Outdoors/TBF High School Fishing National Championship held in conjunction with the National Guard FLW College Fishing National Championship in the spring of 2013.
All SAF members and state championship participants qualify for the largest event in high school fishing, the 2012 High School Fishing World Finals to compete for thousands of dollars in college scholarships and prizes. Each team that qualifies for a conference and/or national championship will receive a travel allowance to help offset expenses. The National Champions will also each receive a $5,000 scholarship to use at the university of their choice.
For information on how to join the new and exciting sport of high school bass fishing, visit www.HighSchoolFishing.org. Find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/hsfishing or follow us on Twitter @hs_fishing.
RELATED ARTICLE: http://www.kndu.com/story/18928256/2012/07/01/state-high-school