One of the first high school athletic events since the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic halted prep sports in March will happen this weekend in Scottsboro.
The Alabama BASS Nation High School Fishing Tournament Trail resumes competition on Saturday with the Lake Guntersville Tide Regional on Saturday at Goose Pond Colony. The event is a 2020 Junior and High School Regional Qualifier in the Alabama’s BASS Nation’s Tide Division.
Scottsboro fishing team coach Cully Nelson said his anglers are excited to be back in action.
“It is a great feeling to be able to get back to competition,” Nelson said. “We went from really thinking that our season might be over to the chance to compete again. I'm not really sure who is more excited, our kids or our (boat) captions. Alabama BASS Nation has done a phenomenal job of putting together a plan to keep everyone as safe as possible.”
BASS Nation stressed that social guidelines must be observed. Only one angler, who must be wearing a mask or facial covering, will be allowed to bring fish to the weigh-in. The weigh-in times on Saturday are 1 p.m. for the junior division and 2 p.m. for the high school division. The tournament features a three-fish limit.
Scottsboro will have 10 anglers fish in the high school division tournament while six will fish in the junior high division tournament. Fishing tandems for Scottsboro in the high school tournament are Connor McLaughlin and Barclay Butler, Landon Grider and Kolby Clark, Tanner Barclay and A.J. Widgeon, Grant West and Cameron Thompson, Addison Gunter and Tracy Richardson, Jake Vance and Josiah McDonald, Matt Croft and Eli Masson, Wynn Reed and Carter Cooper, Karston Renfroe and Sawyer Evans and Buckner Anderson and Greyson Widgeon. Fishing for Scottsboro in the junior division are Luke Dixson and Eli Sparks, Jake Benson and Jackson Reed, Palmer Norris and Holland Griggs, Avery Kesler, Thomas Stewart and Ethan Roberts and Druw Smith and Reed Potter.
Nelson said Scottsboro anglers know the “home-field advantage” of fishing Lake Guntersville is beneficial but doesn’t guarantee anything.
“We can't wait to get back on the water and are very lucky to get to do it here at Goose Pond,” he said. “Lake familiarity can be a blessing and a curse. Some would call it home-field advantage and it definitely is to an extent. The negative is all the knowledge you have of the lake makes you second guess your decisions and can ultimately lead to you making what could be a potentially bad decision. We are going to hope that it plays as a good thing for us this weekend as we try to get more teams qualified for the state championship as well as national championship.”