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** Archived Article - please check for current information. **

Nov. 14, 2011

Four school's Youth Bass Fishing Clubs compete on Lake Hartwell

T.L Hanna’s Bass Fishing Club Coach, Drew Ray, initiated and organized the T.L. Hanna Invitational fishing tournament, which was the first of its kind for the S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and The Bass Federation of South Carolina supported Youth Bass Fishing League. The tournament held on Lake Hartwell, Nov. 5, brought together four different South Carolina schools: Abbeville High School, Bonds Career Center (Greer), Dixie High School and T.L. Hanna High School. 

Taking top honors for most weight was Christopher Bensel and Ben Stone with the Dixie High School (Due West) Hornet Anglers with 7.73 pounds and five fish.  Second place was T.L Hanna High School's Andy Drennon and Chris Vita, Jr. with 7.24 pounds and five fish. Rounding out the top three finishers was Brooks Littleton of Bonds Career Center (Greer) with one fish weighing in at 5.02 pounds and was also the Big Fish winner. Abbeville High School also participated in the tournament.

“We hope that as more schools start these youth bass fishing clubs, more interschool competition will be initiated,” said DNR Aquatic Education Coordinator Lorianne Riggin. “The goal of the program is to increase youth participation in the sport of fishing. The idea is to spark interest in South Carolina youth to learn a hobby that will bring them fun and fellowship for a lifetime that they can then share with others as they become adults.” 

Interested in forming a bass fishing club at your school? All you need to do is get a minimum of six students (within the 11-18 year old range) with dues paid and you can have a Youth Bass Fishing Club. You'll also need an adult at your school to help lead the club, provide advice and help arrange at least two club tournaments, fundraisers, speakers and other learning sessions pertaining to fishing for club meetings.  The Youth Bass Fishing Clubs is a product of a partnership between the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources and The Bass Federation of South Carolina with help and support from parents, teachers, school districts, local bait & tackle shops, community partners and Pure Fishing. 

Find out more by contacting Aquatic Education Coordinator Lorianne Riggin at (803) 737-8483 or RigginL@dnr.sc.gov.

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