DANDRIDGE, Tenn. — Ben Stone of Donalds, S.C., and Clayton Childs of Bishop, Ga., both took home trophies today after winning their respective age divisions in the 2013 B.A.S.S. Nation Junior Bassmaster Southern Divisional on Douglas Lake. See full Junior Bassmaster results.
Both teens will advance to the 2013 Bassmaster Junior World Championship in October in Arkansas, held in conjunction with the 2013 B.A.S.S. Nation Championship.
“It means a lot to win this because it’s my first big tournament,” said Childs, 15, a member of the Lake Oconee Bassmasters. “I’ve fished since I was 1 or 2 years old, but I just started fishing tournaments recently.”
Stone, on the other hand, fishes competitively as much as possible, and after leaving the weigh-in today in Dandridge, he’s heading straight home to compete in another tournament tomorrow morning.
“I’m going to try to fish as a career,” said Stone, 16. “This win means a lot as far as sponsors and experience.”
Childs brought in a limit of 10 pounds, 8 ounces. He caught his bass in two areas. One was a 45-degree bank with rocks and pea gravel. The other was in a creek, where he fished really slowly around willow trees. He relied on a shaky head setup in watermelon candy red that his adult teammate, Paul Watson, pours himself, and a 1/2-ounce finesse jig with a green pumpkin Whack’em creature bait trailer.
Stone also fished shaky heads and jigs to catch his limit of 12-6.
“The jig is one I tied myself,” he said. “I started tying jigs a couple of years ago. It’s special to catch some of your fish on something you made.”
His shaky head setup was a Buckeye Spot Remover with a 5-inch green pumpkin Yamamoto Senko and Zoom Trick Worm, alternately. Like Childs, Stone keyed on rocky 45-degree banks.
The next qualifiers to earn an invitation to the Bassmaster Junior World Championship will come from the 2013 B.A.S.S. Nation Junior Bassmaster Central Divisional, June 7, on Texas’ Sam Rayburn Reservoir. Stay tuned to Bassmaster.com for details.