YORK COUNTY, S.C. — Fishing was good for many of the young competitors during the inaugural York County High School Anglers B.A.S.S. Open Tournament, May 16, at Lake Wylie.
Only three of the 23 teams in the event failed to weigh in a limit, according to Ellie Carnes, tournament coordinator.
“I think the bite was good early and then they were trying to get some size later,” she said.
The tournament was open to all high schools and was also a points tournament for South Carolina B.A.S.S. Nation high school clubs to qualify for the Costa Bassmaster High School National Championship.
The event drew teams from nine schools, which were mostly B.A.S.S. Nation High School teams, including five from the York County HS club, according to Carnes. A portion of the tournament entry fees went to the South Carolina B.A.S.S. Nation to help cover travel expenses for the state teams competing in the national championship.
“I thought it went well being our first tournament,” said Carnes. “We borrowed equipment from an adult club, the Wylie South Bassmasters, to pull it off correctly.”
Parker Inkelaar of Westminster Catawba Christian School in South Carolina and Sam Fitts of Myers Park High School in North Carolina won the event with a 14.31-pound limit, while Weddington (S.C.) High School anglers Ryan Geraghty and Colton Harrell took second with 13.42 pounds. Third place went to Landrum (S.C.) High School teammates Jonathan Mathis and Toy Jackson with 13.35 pounds. They also caught the big bass of the tournament with a 4.25-pounder.
The tournament awarded prizes instead of trophies to the Top 3 teams and big bass winners.
“We did a survey a long time ago and the kids said they would rather have prizes than for us to spend the money on trophies, so that is what we did,” Carnes said.
The winning team received Carrot Stix rods and Lew’s baitcast reels, the second-place team won Duckett Fishing rods, and third place won rod-and-reel combos. The team with the biggest bass won a lure package worth $150.
York County club advisors Mike and Ellie Carnes and Robbie Kidd and Kim Sorrow helped run the tournament.
The high school club will host the tournament again next year on Lake Wylie as one of a series of South Carolina B.A.S.S. Nation state qualifiers. For more information about the tournament, contact Ellie Carnes at 317-517-5994 or [email protected].