May 4-5, Jasper, Tx- Having battled inclement weather all season, Mother Nature showed out this past weekend for the participants in the 2 day 6th Annual Ford SETX Championship Presented by Skeeter Boats. "After all we have battled this season, we deserve this weather for our championship. There were a few storms around Saturday morning, but nothing like we have had this spring. We work hard all year planning for this weekend and it's a blessing not to have to worry about storms and wind for a change" said SETX President Bryan Thomas. Representatives from Ford, Skeeter, Lews, Tackle Addict, Costa, Rod Armorz, Rat L Trap, Culprit, Leak Sealers, Big Bite, Yu Line and Houston Methodist set up displays and booths around the Umphrey Pavilion to add to the festive atmosphere. "These are the companies that make this possible. Many of these companies have been here since the beginning and we simply cant thank them enough for what they have done to help SETX become what it is today" said tournament director John Salamone.
Tackle Addict First Place Team- $10,000.00-36.67 LBS- Jasper HS- Donovan Snider and Morgan White- Boat Captain Brandon White
Attributing their success to some productive scouting the week before and an early morning shad spawn, the these two 8th graders from Jasper accumulated a two day total of 36.67 LBS to claim the FORD SETX Championship presented by Skeeter Boats in 2019. Bad weather on Friday kept them away from the spot on practice day (Friday), but the team knew exactly where to go Saturday morning. "We actually got on the water a bit late Saturday because of an early morning storm that blew through. We were blessed that no one was fishing the spot we had scouted the week before." said Capt. White. After collecting 20 LBS on Saturday, the team went right back to the same spot on Sunday morning and backed up the day one stringer with a near 17 LB bag on Sunday. "We got there early this time. I stood on the trolling motor and the boys slept until first cast" White continued. The team reported limits before 8 am and culling up throughout the day. Their lures of choice? Swim jigs and spinner baits fished 6 foot and less around points with hay grass on them. "We just want to thank God for everything. We literally prayed Saturday morning during those storms that no one was on our spot and when we got there, it was empty. We want to thank all the sponsors for both Jasper HS and SETX. Thank you to Ms Kelli Bailey for her time and sacrifice. Thank you to Co Capt Joe Moorhead for his time as well. Lastly, thanks to everyone who makes happen. This is an unbelievable venue and opportunity for so many kids. It truly is amazing to see things run so smooth with this many participating in these events", concluded Capt. White.
On a side note unrelated to the actual fishing, Mr White wanted to note an observation he has seen multiple times throughout the years at SETX events and wanted to share with all the kids and parents..."One thing that makes me very proud is to see ALL of our anglers STOP and pay respect to our flag when the national anthem is played. Over the past few years, I have seen them stop in the rain, the hot sun, and drop whatever they are doing to make sure they honor our flag and country. This makes me very proud and it says a lot about the kind of kids we are raising here in SETX and the parents who are raising them"
Second Place Team- $8000.00- 32.21 LBS- Lumberton HS- Drake Boykin and Jace Bridges- Boat Captain Jeff Bridges
Momentum goes a long way in bass fishing and this team from Lumberton stayed hot on championship weekend. Having won the 3rd SETX event on April 13th, the duo from Lumberton briefly held the SKEETER Hot Seat before being unseated by the last team to weigh in on Sunday. Launching from Twin Dykes, the Lumberton duo focused on Lower Lake points in 10-14 foot of water using crank baits, Tx Rigged Worms, Swim Baits and Swim Jigs. "We really covered a lot of water. The boys caught at least 60 fish a day. The key was making those moves at the right times" said Capt Bridges. The team wished to thank Rambo Outdoors, Texas Boat World, Yuline, Falcon Rods, Lews Reels, and Garmin electronics (Zac Brown). "On behalf of my team and myself, we would like to thank SETX for putting on such a great tournament. This group of folks continue to raise the bar each year for our young people and run the best HS tournaments in the country. Thank You ALL!!" concluded Capt Bridges.
Third Place Team- $7000.00- 30.47 LBS- Orangefield HS- Tyler Shearin and Kameryn Henderson- Boat Captain Lee Shearin
For about 30 minutes or so on Sunday, these two Freshman from Orangefield found themselves in a very familiar place, the SKEETER hot seat, where they claimed the 2018 SETX Championship. Team after team in the top ten weighed their fish, but could not eclipse the 30 lb mark until the very end, leaving the Orangefield team with a very respectful 3rd place finish. Targeting mid lake shoreline grass edges in the 3-5 foot range with swim jigs and Tx rigged worms, the freshman duo from Orangefield came from outside the top ten on day 2 to grab the 3rd place finish. "The boys really didn't do anything special except be patient and very thorough in their fishing. They were able to fish slower when they needed to and that was a key to their success" said Capt Shearin. The team wished to thank Orangefield team advisor Mr Adam Brown, Rambo Outdoors, and SETX for hosting such awesome tournaments for all of our area schools. A huge thank you to all the volunteers and SETX board members for all of their time and effort in making this such an exciting year and weekend.
REST OF TOP TEN for Championship
4th Place- 30.09 LBS- Bryce Miller and Luke Mulholland- Bridge City HS
5th Place- 29.42 LBS- Kadin Bryant and Blayden Laughlin- Vidor HS
6th Place- 28.43 LBS- Logan ODell and Colton Kibodeaux- Buna HS
7th Place- 28.34 LBS- Jason Hillhouse- Barbers Hill HS
8th Place- 28.18 LBS- Caleb Faulk and Kyle Stegall- PNG HS
9th Place- 27.55 LBS- Hunter Muncrief and Landen Mccary- West Sabine HS
10th Place- 27.49 LBS- David Walls and Isaac Roberts- Porter HS
Top 3 Big Fish of Weekend
9.86 LBS- Blake Hughes and Traeger Johnson- Hardin Jefferson HS
8.94 LBS- Kadin Bryant and Blayden Laughlin- Vidor HS
8.41 LBS- Casey Beard and Clay Jenkins- Lumberton HS
Anglers of the Year (Top 15)
1st Place- Kaden Mueck and Breckett Long- Livingston HS 2386.54 pts
2nd Place- Hunter Muncrief and Landen Mccary- West Sabine HS 2371.86 pts
3rd Place- Trent Webb and Marcus Wilson- Diboll HS 2332.27 pts
4th Place- Hunter Matchett and Dalton Morton- Huntigton HS 2281.77 pts
5th Place- Spencer Brister and Justin James- LCM HS 2281.65 pts
6th Place- Cole Trick and Hayden Holland- Kountze HS 2278.76 pts
7th Place- Drake Boykin and Jace Bridges- Lumberton HS 2268.61 pts
8th Place- Hunter Bellanger and Jake Carlin- Bridge City HS 2268.52 pts
9th Place- Adyson Stringer and Abram Boles- Huntington HS 2261.44 pts
10th Place- Tyler Shearin and Kameryn Henderson- Orangefield HS 2256.58 pts
11th Place- Garrison Byerly and Will Henson- LCM HS 2247.99 pts
12th Place- Lanceton Price and Tyler Roberts- Silsbee HS 2242.79 pts
13th Place- Brenton Peters and River Johnson- Huntington HS 2241.33 pts
14th Place- Preston Johnson and Joey Comstock- Friendswood HS 2239.45 pts
15th Place- Matthew Moody and Alaina Lawson- Corrigan Camden HS 2229.86 pts
Houston Methodist School of the Year- Lumberton HS
After spending a year in the trophy case at LCM, the "traveling trophy" will spend the next year in the trophy case at Lumberton HS. Team advisor Bryan Thomas had this to say about his team and their accomplishment this year, "It is great to win the Houston Methodist SETX School of the Year Award. This has been a challenging year with the weather, flooded lakes, wind, and everything else mother nature threw our way. The LHS teams came to every tournament determined and braved the conditions to catch the fish that they did. I am very proud of everyone on the Lumberton Team for contributing to this award." We would like to thank Silsbee Toyota, Hometown Reality, CMS Technology, OCBM, Speed Technical Services, International Currency, A1 Glass Co., Wal Mart, McCown Paint and Supply, Triangle Sheet Metal, Thermon, Echo, American Valve & Hydrant, Amerflex Rubber, Steel Painter INC, and Flowserve for their support of our team." Congratulations to the 2019 Houston Methodist Team of the Year.
Leak Sealers Conservation Prize Winners
After a tough day on the water, the team of Kaysen Baker and Logan Sled of Barbers Hill decided to snap a photo of their small fish and release it. They then showed that photo at the LEAKSEALERS Conservation Booth and entered their team # into the Conservation Prize Drawing and were the lucky winners of $500.00 from LEAK SEALERS. Thank you to LEAK SEALERS sponsoring this wonderful program!! For more information on how your team can be the next winner, please contact your advisor.
THANK YOU TO ALL OF THE SETX SPONSORS for helping make SETX the premiere HS Fishing Trail in the country!!!
South Texas Ford Dealers Assn, Skeeter Boats/Yamaha, Tackle Addict, Costa, Lews, Leak Sealers Inc., Rat L Trap, Rod Armorz, Houston Methodist Orthopedics and Sports Medicine, Vicious Fishing Line, Culprit Lures, Yu-Line, Big Bite Baits, Crystal Heigley and the Allman Real Estate Team.
Story by Jet Donovan