Written by ACA
The title of Collegiate Bass Texas Shootout Champion was claimed by The University of Tennessee Chattanooga, followed closely by a second place tie between Murray State University and Tarleton State University. These anglers were once again thrown a curveball in their battle against the elements, but still managed to catch some quality fish out of Lake Texoma.
As the rain has been withstanding force thus far at each of the 2015 Cabela’s Collegiate Bass Fishing Series events, the first ever Collegiate Bass Texas Shootout was unfortunately no different. The 46 boat field was greeted by a bright rising sun on the morning of the tournament, but had to figure out the migration of the bass after the two feet of rain the lake received the day before.
Falardeau and Hoskins Catch 13.23lbs for the Texas Shootout Victory
After traveling over 800 miles to fish the series event, Patrick Hoskins and Dillon Falardeau were ready to get things started with the event, while they were unfortunately greeted by buckets of rain. The duo had a tough practice, but their tournament day was a complete turnaround in conditions and fishing methods.
“It rained very hard in practice and the water got super muddy and super high,” said Falardeau, a seven year tournament angling veteran. “A lot of bushes were underwater which was pretty unexpected.”
“The water started clearing up today,” said Hoskins, a Knoxville, Tennessee native. “The majority of our spots completely changed from practice and we had to change our game plan up completely.”
The University of Tennessee Chattanooga team was able to get a five fish limit in the boat, but not without some complications.
“We didn’t have a fish until one o’clock. Finally we started fishing swimbaits in the bushes and caught all of our fish. I was really nervous, but it was a great feeling to catch those fish and to get a victory. I’m very happy with our performance,” added Hoskins.
The team walked away from the event with $800 in Cabela’s Gift Cards, two Temple Fork Outfitters rods, two Mustang lifejackets, $1000 in Yamaha Contingency money, $500 in Association of Collegiate Anglers Contingency money, $500 in Costa Contingency money, free matching jersey hoodies from G2 Gemini, and $250 in Cabela’s Contingency money.
Murray State University Catches Five for Second Place
Though it is a rare occurrence in bass fishing weigh ins, ties do happen, which is exactly what happened between Murray State University’s team of Ryan Kirkpatrick and Logan Thomas and Tarleton State University with 12.80 pounds.
Competing in the event looking to take the top spot in the Cabela’s School of the Year leaderboard, the Murray State Bass Anglers looked to not only be competitive in the event, but to win. The practice conditions, however, gave the team an unexpected hurdle that they were proudly able to surpass.
“We had a terrible practice,” said Pure Fishing Team member, Ryan Kirkpatrick. “Our goal was to get School of the Year points and get into first on the SOY leaderboard, but Logan and I had some doubts about how the tournament would go with such a big difference in water level change overnight.”
Thomas added that “we stayed in one stretch only about a mile away from take-off and were able to catch a limit of all smallmouth while throwing swimbaits. We’re really happy with our performance and we made a great run at the Cabela’s School of the Year race too!”
Kirkpatrick and Thomas were able to pocket $525 in Cabela’s Gift Cards, $500 in Ranger Cup Contingency money, two Temple Fork Outfitters rods, two Mustang lifejackets,
Tarleton State University Catches Four…. Also for Second Place
Like just about every other team that pre-fished the event, the Tarleton State team of Stetson Overton and Justin Seeton were distraught with the conditions that they were presented with to start the tournament. Typically a quite clear lake, Lake Texoma greeted every angler with muddy water conditions with few clear spots in the morning, but when the 7:00a.m. take-off time struck, the duo was off to the races.
“The muddy water really hurt us, like it did for most everyone,” said Seeton. “We found some bed fish in practice, but lost a lot of them due to the muddy water.”
As the day went on and the water began to settle, the Tarleton State team was able to resort to some of their bed fishing tactics and hooked the big bass of the day weighing in at 6.56 pounds.
“I hooked the fish earlier in the day, but it broke me off. It was very painful,” Overton said with a chuckle. “Luckily I was able to go back later in the day and I stuck her again, but got her in the boat that time!”
Along with sight fishing for bedding fish, the team also flipped grass and bushes to catch their other three keepers.
“This is my fourth time to fish this lake, but my first time to catch a keeper! I am extremely happy with how we ended up!” exclaimed Seeton.
For their efforts, the duo won $525 in Cabela’s Gift Cards, two Temple Fork Outfitters rods, two Mustang lifejackets, and two Abu Garcia Revo’s for big bass of the tournament.
Completing the Top Ten Teams of the Collegiate Bass Texas Shootout are as follows:
4. Dallas Baptist University – 8.81 lbs
5. University of Texas – 7.96 lbs
6. University of Central Oklahoma – 7.83 lbs
7. McKendree University – 7.65 lbs
8. Tarleton State University – 6.87 lbs
9. Louisiana State University – 5.66 lbs
10. University of Louisiana Monroe – 5.64 lbs