CSU Bass Anglers Win College Fishing Tournament

COLUMBUS, Ga. - Columbus State University captured a major college fishing tournament over the weekend.

The CSU bass fishing club team of Casey Cook and Christopher Light won the National Guard FLW College Fishing Southeast Division tournament at Wheeler Lake near Decatur, Ala. The pair, with six bass weighing 11 pounds, 14 ounces, topped 39 other teams representing schools throughout the Southeast.

The victory earned $10,000 to be split between the team and university.

“The last two tournaments we did what everybody else was doing, but this time we tried something different,” said Light, referring to FLW competitions earlier this spring in South Carolina and Florida.

For the earlier events, Light and Cook followed their competitors’ general fishing patterns. But heavy mayfly activity along the Wheeler Lake shore caught the CSU team’s attention, and they correctly anticipated bass being drawn to the shoreline where bream were feeding on the mayflies.

“Just about everyone else fished the deep waters, but we caught about 20 bass from the shallow banks with a white glitter trick worm,” said Light, who has fished competitively in local tournaments around his hometown of Cumming, Ga. Cook has done similarly around his hometown of Kennesaw, Ga.

Though Cook and Light earned their degrees in May in finance and communication, respectively, they’ll continue competing for CSU in the tournament’s final rounds.

Their victory advanced them to a 20-team field for the Nov. 21-23 regional finals at Sanford, Fla.’s Monroe Harbor. The top five teams advance from there to the April 10-12 national finals at Knoxville, Tenn.

Meanwhile, other CSU bass fishing club members have an opportunity to join the regional finals as they compete in the final preliminary event of the 2009 season — Oct. 10 at Lake Guntersville, Ala.

The 10-member bass fishing club formed in February as part of the CSU Campus Recreation Club Sports program (http://campusrec.colstate.edu/clubsports.asp).

The college bass fishing tournament (http://www.collegefishing.com) is one of 12 tournament trails hosted by FLW Outdoors, named after Ranger Boats founder Forrest L. Wood.