Eight Eagle Anglers prepare for Bassmaster HS Nationals

Eagle Anglers from left, Bransford Dean, Dustin Osborne, Bryar Goins, Cody Gunter, Austin Goins, Wade Sneed, Drew Gunter, Chase Watson, Coach Brian Derlak. (photo submitted)

The Rhea County Eagle Anglers will be taking four teams the first week of August to this year’s Bassmaster High School National Championship on Kentucky Lake.

The teams of Chase Waston / Drew Gunter, Wade Sneed/Cody Gunter, Brandsford Dean / Dustin Osborne, and Austin Goins / Bryar Goins all qualified for the National Tournament.

The Watson/Gunter team won the event on Tims Ford Reservoir to be the very 1st team from Rhea County to make it to Nationals.

While the Sneed /Gunter team finished 6th out of a 330 boat field on Lake Guntersville in the BASS High School Southern Open. Both the teams of Dean/Osborne and Goins/Goins qualified through a points system that we follow in the Southeast Tennessee High School Bass Trail.

“The RC Eagle Anglers had an unbelievable fishing season. To have one team to make it to the National Tournament is a big deal, to have four teams to make it to the National Tournament is outstanding and something to be proud of,” says Eagle Anglers’ coach Brian Derlak.

In adition to the eight anglers going, there were also several Eagle Angler teams that just barely missed making it to the Nationals.

“I am incredibly proud of all my Anglers; they have greatly exceeded my expectations this year. With the surface temperatures reaching close to 90 degrees, fishing will be tough.”

“I am not worried about their performance on Kentucky Lake at all. They know how to fish the Tennessee River and Kentucky Lake is the largest lake on the Tennessee River. It covers over 160,000 acres and has over 2,000 miles of shoreline for the bass to hide. I am sure that the bigger schools of fish will be caught on the ledges offshore, but I will not rule out the shallow bite.”

Official practice begins on August 1st and continues through August 3rd. Competition begins on August 4th with 160 boats representing 37 states and one Canadian Province. At the end of the day August 5th, the field will be cut to the top 12 with the final day of competition on Saturday, August 6th.

“I hope that the RC Eagle Anglers will be fishing on Saturday, August 6th for a National Championship!”

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