FLORENCE, Ala. — Nick LaDart and Brian Eaton of Louisiana Monroe punched their ticket to the Carhartt College Series National Championship here this past weekend in the College Series Wild Card tournament on Pickwick Lake. The duo finished ninth overall with 33-10 ounces.
Bethel University’s Jacob Hardy and Jake Lawrence brought in 40 pounds, 14 ounces of bass from claimed the tournament title. The National Championship tournament will be held Aug. 1-3 on Chatuge Reservoir in Georgia. Hardy and Lawrence, along with 12 other college fishing teams, took advantage of the opportunity and will converge on Young Harris College, host of the championship.
Other fishermen of local interest who competed and how they finished are:
* Blake Deron – Brett Preuett Louisiana – Monroe 11th place, 30-1
* Drew Comeaux – Bryan Coleman LSU, 22nd place, 25-15
* Matthew Loetscher – Peyton Igo, Louisiana Tech, 38th place 17- 5
* Trapper Munn – Jason Daniel , Louisiana- Monroe, 52nd place, 8-3
Fishing was apparently pretty tough. “You just had to be persistent,” Lawrence said. “There were little bitty places you had to hit: schools [of fish] inside of schools. The school would be 50 or 75 yards long stretched down a ledge, but there would be one place that the big ones were on.”
Current was key as always this time of year on Pickwick. Once it picked up around 11 a.m. today, the schools started to ignite. “We had one fish at 11,” Lawrence said. “We made a run to a school we hadn’t fished this week, and we culled everything we had in 20 casts.”
Andrew Nutt and Zachary Wiggers of the University of North Alabama finished second with a two-day total of 40-3. The local powerhouse capitalized on their knowledge of the lake and their understanding of ledge fishing to clinch their National Championship berth.
College fishing has really taken off and the college circuits have become a training ground for the pros of the future, just like other sports. Hang on to your hats, boys. And good luck in the national championship.