The 2017 Costa Bassmaster High School National Championship at Kentucky Lake in Paris, Tenn., shortened due to inclement weather from three days to two, finished up with beautiful weather Saturday.
After day one of fishing, the Warren County team of brothers Matthew and Samuel Vandagriff and their boat captain, father Barry Vandagriff, moved from sixth place to finish fifth place in the nation, weighing in a total tally of 40 pounds, 15 ounces of bass. They win, among trophies and other accolades, a $2,000 scholarship.
Just qualifying for the tournament is an achievement and Warren County had two boats in the contest. The team of Asa Robertson, Blake Delong and boatman Jeff Robertson competed as well, finishing 154 out of 230 boats in total.
Only 20 boats from the state of Tennessee were in the competition so statistically local fisherman were 10 percent of the state’s entire representation.
“We’re all very pleased, of course. They wanted to win but top five out of that many boats is pretty good,” said Shannon Vandagriff, the boys’ mother. “We are all out on the water today. Lots less stressed but already trying to find some bigger and better places for next year.”
If you want to watch the tournament but didn’t make it to Paris, fret not. It will be broadcast on ESPNU sometime in August.