GADSDEN, Ala. — Reid Carter and Ryan Parks won the Alabama B.A.S.S. Federation Nation Junior State Championship on Neely Henry Lake, Sept. 15. The pair will represent their state at the 2013 Cabela’s Bassmaster Federation Nation Southern Divisional on Douglas Lake in Tennessee next spring.
Carter, a member of the Birmingham Junior Bass Club, caught a three-fish limit of 7.71 pounds, winning the 15- to 18-year-olds age division. It was a close finish; just behind him were Seth Butts, who brought in 7.68 pounds, and Zeke Gossett, 7.62 pounds.
Parks, a member of the Young Southerners Bass Club, weighed in a three-fish limit of 9.91 pounds to win the 11- to 14-year-olds age group. Competition was not as tight in this age bracket. Second-place finisher Jacob Brown was more than 3 1/2 pounds behind with 6.31 pounds, and Tucker Vernon, third, had 5.83 pounds.
Timmy Horton, Bassmaster Elite Series pro, served as emcee for the event.
In total, 19 three-fish limits were brought to the scales. The biggest fish of the tournament, a 4.05-pounder, was caught by Dylan Brown of the Young Southerners Bass Club.
Nine youth clubs were represented at the championship.
According to Ron McDonald of Southern Fishing News, shakey heads were the real favorite among competitors, followed by topwaters, swimbaits, worms, jigs and crankbaits. Anglers caught mixed bags of spots and largemouth.
During the weigh-in, Bobby McDonald of the Alabama B.A.S.S. Federation Nation presented a thank-you plaque to Academy Sports+Outdoors, accepted by Academy’s regional promotions manager, Rick Burleson. Recognition was also given to Eulon Lee and Phillip Peters, the boat captains for winners Carter and Parks.
“They were just two of many adults who volunteered their time and usually a boat to sit and watch young bass fishermen fish all day,” said McDonald. “They are the quiet heroes of youth tournament fishing.”