By Shiela K. Haynes, Sports Editor
The Winnsboro Fishing Team placed 14th out of 133 high schools represented at the Texas High School Bass Fishing Association state tournament held May 14-15 at Lake Belton.
The 2021-22 Raiders have made successful run in every facet. Competing in the Northeast Division, Winnsboro gathered team of the year honors to finish ahead of 30 other district schools. They placed seven fishing duos in the top 20 in a field of 140 teams in the division.
They advanced 14 of their 15 fishing duos to the regional tournament held April 9 at Lake Palestine. From there, six teams moved on to the state tournament where they finished 14th.
Other Northeast Division schools placing at state included Rains (20th), Grand Saline (31st), Alba-Golden (61st), Atlanta (79th), Quitman (85th), Mineola (113th), and Paul Pewitt (122nd).
Pake South was Winnsboro’s top angler at state. Fishing solo, South hauled in four fish Saturday and four fish Sunday for a combined 14.41 pounds. He finished 67thin the field of 325.
Josh Blair and Colton Blair filled the five-fish limit Saturday weighing in 7.87 pounds. They pulled in three Sunday for a two-day total 12.87 pounds and finished 87th overall.
Nico Perez and Braydon Vance caught a two-day total of five fish weighing 10.95 pounds; they placed 123rd.
Kanyon Russom and Collin Petty caught four fish weighing 7.5 pounds; they placed 181st.
Nathan Brown and Alex Holcomb finished 186th. The pair caught four fish weighing 7.23 pounds.
Colten Shirley and Jace Busby caught three fish for 5.82 pounds. They placed 213th.
Altogether Winnsboro anglers weighed in 21 fish for a total weight 38.23 pounds.
The state’s top duo hailed from Columbia High; they caught 10 bass weighing 25.95 pounds. The top high school team was CS Anglers with 24 fish for 58.27 pounds.
The season is not quite at an end for three Winnsboro teams. Team South (Pake South), Team Brown (Nathan Brown and Alex Holcomb) and Team Ivic (Hayden Potts and Carston Moore) have qualified for the Angler of the Year Tournament by virtue of top 10 regular-season finishes in their division. Team Brumley (Skeet Brumley and Slayton Hood) are alternates as an 11th place finisher. The AOY Challenge takes place June 4 on Lake Conroe.