High School All-American

2022 Bassmaster High School All-American team names 12 new members

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Twelve of the top high school anglers in the country have been selected as new members of the notable Bassmaster High School All-American Fishing Team presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors.
 
“For eight years, the Bassmaster High School All-American program has identified and honored some of the most accomplished student athletes in the country,” said Chase Anderson, B.A.S.S. CEO. “We’ve seen past members go on to decorated college fishing careers, compete in the iconic Bassmaster Classic and begin promising careers in the fishing industry. This group of 12 outstanding All-Americans is equally as talented and poised to do amazing things. We appreciate Academy Sports + Outdoors for partnering with B.A.S.S. to recognize these athletes’ fishing skills and commitment to academics, conservation and community service.”
 
Nearly 400 applications nominating students in grades 10-12 were submitted from 34 states across the nation. Of these, 53 students were chosen as Bassmaster All-State anglers. After considering tournament résumés, conservation efforts, community service activities and recommendations from school officials and coaches, a panel of judges consisting of representatives from the sportfishing industry, media and conservation groups further narrowed the field to the Top 12 high school anglers in the country.
 
“Congratulations! This goes to show your efforts on and off the water do not go unnoticed,” said Glenn Cale, B.A.S.S. Nation tournament manager — College, High School and Junior. “I’m superproud of you all and look forward to sharing this special moment with you. Be sure to chase all of your dreams, because they do not chase you back.”
 
The 2022 All-American team has been invited to participate in an exclusive Bassmaster High School All-American Tournament, which will be held in conjunction with the 2022 Simms Bassmaster Elite at Lake Fork, scheduled to take place May 19-22 in Quitman, Texas. Each All-American angler will be paired with an Elite Series pro for the one-day derby to be held on a nearby fishery.
 
Congratulations to the following student athletes for being named to the 2022 Bassmaster High School All-American Fishing Team presented by Academy Sports + Outdoors. Following are short biographies of the 2022 team members. (Only tournament records from the past 12 months were considered.)
Banks Shaw, Harrison, Tenn
Banks Shaw, a senior at Sale Creek High School, amassed four wins, two Top 5 finishes and eight Top 20 finishes in the 2021 tournament season. He and his partner won the 2021 Bassmaster High School Championship on Lake Chickamauga, beating out a field of 300-plus competitors. He is a three-time National Championship qualifier and triple-qualified for the 2022 Bassmaster High School National Championship.
 
“Banks Shaw is an outstanding young man and angler. He was one half of Tennessee's first national championship team and has been a dominant angler over the last couple of seasons,” said David Lowrie, Tennessee B.A.S.S. Nation High School and Youth state director. “Banks is an excellent ambassador for the sport.”
 
When he is not competing, Shaw volunteers his time by mentoring younger anglers and taking them out on the water. He also recently helped in organizing a benefit tournament for a local family. Shaw plans to continue fishing on the college level at the University of North Alabama and hopes to one day earn a place on the Bassmaster Elite Series.
Cole Berry, Terre Haute, Ind.
Cole Berry, a junior at Terre Haute North Vigo High School, earned three wins during the 2021 tournament season, as well as four Top 5 finishes and one Top 20 finish. He was named a 2021 Bassmaster High School All-State winner for the state of Indiana and was the first-ever Gold Medal Award winner in bass fishing at Terre Haute North High School.
 
Robert Haworth, superintendent of Vigo County Schools, said, “Cole has been active in our community, not only participating in community projects, but excelling as a leader. His personality and quick wit make Cole admired by teachers, coaches and teammates. He is a young man of exceptional moral and social character.”
 
When he’s not on the water, Berry volunteers within his community, including building handicap-accessible boat docks and working with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources to teach elementary school students the importance of conservation. He has worked to raise money for St. Jude Children’s Hospital and worked with Terre Haute Firefighters Local 758 to provide presents for needy families. Berry does all of this while maintaining a 3.935 GPA.
Connor Dunn, Lucas, Texas
Lovejoy High School senior Connor Dunn earned two big wins during the 2021 tournament season, placing first on fields of 200-plus boats, as well as amassing three Top 5 and five Top 20 finishes. He also earned the first-place Angler of the Year title for the 2020-2021 Texas High School Bass Association North Division.
 
Describing Dunn as positive and personable, Superintendent of Lovejoy Independent School District Katie Kordel said, “Connor is an exceptional student with significant academic accomplishments. Connor is graduating in the top of his class and is an AP scholar with honors. Connor has a heart of service and carries through with action.”
 
Outside of competition, Dunn is incredibly involved in both his school and community, serving as the captain of the Leopard Fishing Team and leader of the Lovejoy High School Fishing Club, as well as president of the Young Men’s Service League Lovejoy Chapter. He has completed over 400 hours of community service, volunteering his time at a myriad of organizations including Cornerstone Ranch, where he worked to establish “pond days” to host fishing days at local ponds, as well as McKinney Roots, Allen Ministerial Alliance Food Pantry, Kids Against Hunger and many more.
Evan Fields, Shelbyville, Ky.
A senior at Martha Layne Collins High School, Evan Fields collected three wins during the 2021 tournament season, alongside four Top 5 wins and four Top 20 wins. He earned the title of Collins High School Angler of the Year for 2020-2021 and was also named to the 2021 Bassmaster High School All-State Fishing Team.
 
“Evan sets forth plans for success, then implements his plans with work. As an angler, Evan has earned everything he has been given and set the standard for his younger teammates,” said L. Powell Miller, athletic director at Martha Layne Collins High School. “It is true that Evan Fields distinguished himself by his personal hard work, but [he has] also earned respect for his demonstrated ability to help his younger teammates. At the high school level it takes much courage to lead, and Evan possesses such courage.”
 
Fields was a link leader in the Link Crew at his school, a leadership training program designed to support freshmen by assigning them a senior leader. He has also volunteered his time with Operation Christmas Child and the Adopt A Child Program and works year-round to maintain the habitat at his local lake. Fields also runs his own rod repair and custom bait business, all while maintaining a 4.174 GPA. Fields recently committed to Campbellsville University and intends to pursue a career in professional bass fishing or the fishing industry after graduating.
Gabriel Clark, Ellerslie, Ga. 
A junior at Harris County High School, Gabriel “Storm” Clark amassed an impressive seven wins during the 2021 tournament season, as well as three Top 5 finishes and four Top 20 finishes, all on fields of 100-plus anglers. He also was a qualifier for the Alabama Bass Trail Championship and is currently tied for first in the Reel Money Student Angler Federation Angler of the Year race.
 
“Storm’s fishing accomplishments speak for themselves. He has done very well in tournaments and leads the team in a positive manner. He helps younger fishermen be better through both example and encouragement,” said J. Bryce Robinson, athletic director and assistant principal at Harris County High School. “Storm is a big reason that the fishing team at Harris County High School is thriving.”
 
Clark has helped organize and assist with fishing events that are held at his church and has volunteered with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources and Georgia Power to place fish attractors in local waterways. Clark’s goals are to qualify for and win a state tournament and a national tournament.
Hudson Choquette, Headland, Ala.
Headland High School senior Hudson Choquette won three tournaments over the course of the 2021 tournament season and placed in the Top 5 once and the Top 20 eight times. He is a five-time Bassmaster High School National Championship qualifier and a six-time Alabama B.A.S.S. Nation High School State Championship qualifier. In 2021, he earned the title of 2021 Wiregrass Student Angler Trail Angler of the Year and was named a 2021 Bassmaster High School All-American Honorable Mention. 
 
Christopher Tate, Alabama B.A.S.S. Nation high school social media director, describes Choquette as humble and modest, saying, “Hudson’s work ethic is beyond reproach as he attempts to seek perfection in his academic, personal and fishing career. He is a year-round sportsman, but is truly passionate about conservation and advocates using his social media platform. His passion for conservation has resulted in numerous clean-ups at Lake Eufaula.”
 
Choquette serves as the Headland High School SGA President, as well as a Headland City Chamber Ambassador and an elected Headland High School Boys State attendee, all whilst maintaining a 4.14 GPA. He has served as the president of the Headland High School Bass Team, and in 2021, he led a tackle drive to get fishing equipment to the Boys Home in Dothan, Ala. He has volunteered with multiple organizations, including Southern Outdoor Sports, Fish Head Spin at ICAST and Go Fish, Alabama!
Jared Mizell, Pearland, Texas
Jared Mizell, a senior at Turner College & Career High School, amassed an impressive six wins during the 2021 tournament season, as well as one Top 5 finish and five Top 20 finishes. During 2022, he has placed in the Top 10 in Angler of the Year points for the Texas High School Bass Association (THSBA) Bayou City Division and is a qualifier for the upcoming Texas B.A.S.S. Nation Youth Series Championship on Lake O’ the Pines as well as the THSBA State Championship on Belton Lake.
 
“Jared is respectful, shows leadership abilities, is humble and hardworking and wants to get better each day,” says LJA Engineering Vice President, Christopher LeBlanc. “He spends most weekends on the water, whether it's at tournaments or pre-fishing, all while maintaining his schoolwork and grades.”
 
Mizell is the founder and club president of the Dawson Anglers fishing club and has volunteered over 500 hours of his time to community service, focusing on events that bring awareness to the outdoors and conservation. In 2021, he participated in a C.A.S.T. for Kids event as well as the Kid Fish Fest with Texas Parks & Wildlife. As president of the Dawson Anglers, Mizell has worked to help the club organize and sponsor the C.A.S.T. for Kids Pearland event that will take place at the end of this month. 
 
Levi Thibodaux, Thibodaux, La.
Levi Thibodaux, a senior at Thibodaux High School, amassed three wins and seven Top 5s during the 2021 tournament season, as well as two Top 20 finishes. In 2021, he was the East Division Louisiana B.A.S.S. Nation Champion and the overall points winner for the inaugural 2021 Bassmaster High School Combine. He qualified for the 2021 Bassmaster and MLF Nationals, has qualified for the Louisiana B.A.S.S. Nation Championship for the last four years and has finished in overall first place in the Lafourche Bassmasters Club for the last three years.
 
“Levi’s talent on the water, upstanding character, humility, leadership and mentoring skills, his passion for preserving and protecting freshwater fisheries, and his love for his community are qualities that make him an All-American!” says Thomas “T.J.” Boudreaux, Lafourche Bassmasters President. “Levi has a proven track record of success on the water at the high school level. Last weekend marked the completion of the 2022 Louisiana High School B.A.S.S. Nation’s qualifying season. Levi and his partner finished with the highest point total in the state of Louisiana to win the coveted Team Angler of the Year Award.”
 
Thibodaux has been the president of the Lafourche Bassmasters for the past three years and has been instrumental in running meetings, hosting fundraising events and preparing activities for the team as well as lining up guest speakers. He has also been key in growing the high school bass team from one to 17 members. When Levi is not excelling on the water and in the classroom, he is spending time mentoring young anglers and teaching them the importance of fishery conservation. He also volunteered countless hours after Hurricane Ida, cleaning yards, cutting down trees, demoing houses and removing debris.
Nathan Reynolds, Nashville, Tenn.
Nathan Reynolds, a senior at Valor Flagship Academy, earned four wins during the 2021 tournament season, as well as three Top 5 finishes and five Top 20 finishes. He also competes in adult tournament trails, including the Alabama Bass Trail. In 2021 he was named a member of the Bassmaster High School All-State Fishing Team.
 
Jackson Sprayberry, head of school at Valor College Prep, said, “In a society where the number of checks in the win column is the sole determination of one’s merits, Nathan not only excels in that regard, but is also a standout student as it relates to his conservation efforts and his
commitment to keeping a strong academic record as he navigates school and his rigorous fishing schedule. Nathan embodies diligence, tenacity, and leadership in the broader fishing community as a participant and [in his] commitment to conservation efforts.”
 
Reynolds founded the Backwoods Bassin’ fishing team, which he has nurtured into one of the most competitive teams in the state. He has also created informational social media videos for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA), to help encourage boat safety. He has been incredibly involved in conservation efforts, including collecting thousands of Christmas trees to fortify habitats in the middle Tennessee area. As the trees were placed, Reynolds and his partners logged the GPS coordinates to send to TWRA so that they could be shared with other anglers.
Rein Golubjatnikov, Pittsford, N.Y.
Rein Golubjatnikov, a senior at Pittsford Central School District, earned an impressive four tournament wins, three Top 5 finishes and a Top 20 finish during the 2021 tournament season. One of those wins included the New York High School Championship held on Oneida Lake. He also made the New York State Bass Team (an adult-level team) and will be participating in the Regional Championship. He also triple-qualified for the 2021 Bassmaster High School National Championship.
 
“Our local fishing community is a better place because of Rein’s involvement in clubs and community activities. He stood out among his peers with his participation in local fishing chapters,” said Kevin Cutaia, Pittsford fishing coach. “Rein’s work ethic and dedication to the sport has led his efforts to expand the sport to all levels of anglers. He is one of the most helpful, respectful and dependable athletes I have ever coached.”
 
Golubjatnikov is the creator and captain of the Pittsford Fishing Team, which now has more than 150 members. He is very involved in his community and participates in a plethora of clubs and community activities. Rein hosts “fizzing” education at local club events and weigh-ins in order to ensure all fish are properly cared for. He will be attending the University of Alabama in the fall, where he plans on continuing his fishing career.
Tyson Verkaik, Eustis, Fla.
Tyson Verkaik, senior at First Academy-Leesburg, collected five wins during the 2021 tournament season, alongside five Top 5 finishes and eight Top 20 finishes. In 2021, he was named a member of the 2021 Bassmaster High School All-American Fishing Team and was the 2020 Florida B.A.S.S. Nation Fall Trail winner and part of the 2020/2021 Florida B.A.S.S. Nation High School Team of the Year.
 
When he is not competing, Verkaik, is a citizen volunteer with the University of Florida Lake Watch program and volunteers at school and church as a video production specialist. His favorite community service project is hosting local underprivileged children at his school’s pond for shore fishing excursions. In 2021 he led a group of student volunteers in assisting children from a local shelter so that they could experience fishing for the first time.
 
“Tyson demonstrates impressive character in the classroom as well as in the community. He has
given over 200 hours of his time to help others. His altruistic character leads him to generous
acts of service to those around him,” said Erin Myers, teacher at First Academy-Leesburg. “Tyson has a true servant’s heart, which I personally believe he will use to bring well-being and aid to our community.”
Braxton Hopper, Chelsea, Ala.
Braxton Hopper, a senior at Chelsea High School, amassed an impressive six tournament wins during the 2021 season, as well as eight Top 5 and two Top 20 finishes. He also won the 2021 “King of the Coosa” title with a perfect score of 900 out of 900 points, winning three out of four events — a feat never accomplished before in the history of the King of the Coosa Trail.

“[King of the Coosa] is a coveted title for a number of reasons. First, it is a solo trail. So, it is advantageous to fish alone ... However, Braxton always brings a younger angler in the boat with him to teach them how to become winners and leaders in the future. This is just one way he leads,” said Curtis Gossett, District 3 director for the Alabama Student Angler Bass Fishing Association and tournament director of the King of the Coosa High School Solo Bass Fishing Trail.

Outside of tournaments, Hopper mentors junior anglers by taking them on the water and helping them develop skills with bait selection, casting and knot tying. He is also fully trained in fish care and handling and has put those skills to use volunteering at multiple B.A.S.S. tournaments. Hopper plans on fishing at the collegiate level and one day wants to compete at the professional level.