BROOKELAND, Texas (Sept. 11, 2023) – The Louisiana State University (LSU)-Shreveport duo of Brayden Nichols of Blanchard, Louisiana, and William Tew of Bossier City, Louisiana, won the MLF College Fishing event on Sam Rayburn Reservoir Friday with a five-bass limit weighing 20 pounds, 12 ounces. The victory earned the Pilots’ bass club $2,000 and a qualification into the 2024 MLF College Fishing National Championship.
“Our morning spot didn’t really work out,” said Tew. “We caught two little ones there. We had a bunch of brush piles we were going to run throughout the day, so we ended up hitting them pretty early.”
Tew said the team targeted brush piles in 15 to 20 feet of water in the San Augustine Park area of Rayburn, and fished their targets slowly with a Zoom Magnum Trick Worm on a shaky-head rig. Their tactic produced eight bass during the tournament – all keepers.
“We caught a 5-pounder and a 6-pounder when we got to our first brush piles,” Tew said. “We kind of beat around for the fifth fish and finally caught it. We weeded through a bunch of 2-pounders, and about 11 o’clock we went back to where we caught the two big ones and caught a 6½-pounder.
“It felt good to start the season off with a win, and it’s a real credit to the whole team - my teammates and our coach, as well as my family,” Tew added.
The teams that qualified to compete at the 2024 College Fishing National Championship are:
1st: LSU-Shreveport – Braden Nichols, Blanchard, La., and William Tew, Bossier City, La., five bass, 20-12, $2,000
2nd: McKendree University – Grant Olsen, Gardner, Ill., and Evan Sutton, Highland, Ill., five bass, 18-5, $1,000
3rd: Tarleton State-Stephenville – Sam Semper, Parker, Texas, five bass, 17-2, $700
4th: Tarleton State-Stephenville – Clayton Easter and Trevor Easter, both of Morgan, Texas, five bass, 17-0, $600
5th: Arkansas Tech University – Kanon Harmon, Benton, Ark., and Cody McEntire, Walnut Ridge, Ark., five bass, 16-3, $500
6th: Louisiana Tech University – Colby Dark, West Monroe, La., five bass, 15-5
7th: Tarleton State-Stephenville – Garett Cadenhead, Fort Worth, Texas, and Jared Mizell, Pearland, Texas, five bass, 14-12
8th: Northeastern State University-Tahlequah – Grayson Hudson, Keifer, Okla., and Matthew Huffman, Park Hill, Okla., five bass, 14-11
9th: Texas A&M – Reid Farris, Adkins, Texas, and Sid Wallace, San Angelo, Texas, five bass, 14-5
10th: Stephen F. Austin – Ben Burns, Lucas, Texas, and Ian Nash, Melissa, Texas, five bass, 14-4
The College Fishing event on Sam Rayburn Reservoir was hosted by the Jasper County Development District. The next event for College Fishing anglers will be the College Fishing event on Lake Hartwell, Oct. 27 in Anderson, South Carolina.
The 2023 MLF College Fishing season features college teams from across the country competing in nine regular-season tournaments. The top 12 percent of teams from each regular-season tournament advance to the 2024 College Fishing National Championship.
Proud sponsors of the 2023 MLF College Fishing include: 13 Fishing, Abu Garcia, B&W Trailer Hitches, Black Rifle Coffee Company, E3, Favorite Fishing, Fox Rent a Car, General Tire, Grundens, Lawless Lures, Lew’s, Lowrance, Mercury, Mossy Oak, Onyx, Phoenix, Polaris, Power-Pole, Strike King, Tackle Warehouse, T-H Marine, Wiley X and YETI.