Branson – On Saturday, May 7, marked the 10 year anniversary for the White River Valley Electric Cooperative’s annual Hooked on Education Fishing Tournament in support of WRVEC’s Scholarship Trust. The event brought 172 boats, the largest number to date. The annual gathering lured anglers back to raise funds for youth in the WRVEC service area looking to further their education.
Participating boats launched at 7 a.m. from Theodosia Marina on Bull Shoals Lake. Teams had eight hours for their chance at the title and up to five fish to bring in the highest poundage, biggest bass, other fish and the smallest stringer.
MANY BOATS ON WATER: A record number of fishermen attended the Hooked on Education Fishing tournament. With 172 teams, this was the most successful year in the history of the tournament.
FIRST PLACE OVERALL: Buck Comstock, Protem, Missouri; and Greg Blair, Bradleyville, Missouri, won with a 20.94-pound catch and biggest bass weighing 5.7 pounds.
“The Hooked on Education Fishing Tournament allows community members to support the educational pursuits of our youth while doing something that they enjoy,” WRVEC CEO Chris Hamon said. “As a Touchstone Energy Cooperative, one of our founding core values is commitment to community. This tournament exemplifies that commitment.”
The top 18 teams were awarded prizes at the weigh-in.
- Buck Comstock, Protem, Missouri; and Greg Blair, Bradleyville, Missouri, won $2,400 with a 20.94-pound catch and brought in another $780 with the largest bass weighing in at 5.7 pounds.
- Denver Gulley, Mountain Home, Arkansas won $1,850 with a 15.38-pound catch.
- Tony Todd and Derek Blair, both of Bradleyville, Missouri, won $1,300 with a 15.31-pound catch.
- Michael Welch, Tecumseh, Missouri; and Phillip McFarland, Lake View, Arkansas, won $900 with a 14.77-pound catch.
- Willie McCord and Michael Bassham, both of Salem, Arkansas, won $750 with a 14.53-pound catch.
- Clarence and Chance Snell, both of Wasola, Missouri, won $650 with a 14.2-pound catch.
- Gary Daniel and Jim Martin, both of Harrison, Arkansas, won $600 with a 14.16-pound catch.
- Robert Merriman, Gainesville, Missouri; and Verlin Cotter, Gamaliel, Arkansas, won $550 with a 13.92-pound catch and brought in another $600 with the second-largest bass weighing in at 4.38 pounds.
- Jay McLean and Chris Hudson, both of Mountain Home, Arkansas, won $450 with a 13.67-pound catch and brought in another $340 with the third-largest bass weighing in at 4.28 pounds.
- Wesley Rogers, Mammoth Springs, Arkansas; and Henry Maguffee, Salem, Arkansas, won $400 with a 13.44-pound catch.
- Kelvin Preis, Mountain Home, Arkansas; and L.A. Lindsey, Cherokee Village, Arkansas, won $350 with a 13.32- pound catch.
- Tony Moser, Violet Hill, Arkansas; and Randy Zeigler, Glencoe, Arkansas, won $315 with a 13.16-pound catch.
- Fred Hale, West Plains, Missouri; and Brian Wilson, Pottersville, Missouri, won $300 with a 13.14-pound catch.
- Brian Sherrill and Arthur Fortin, both of Isabella, Arkansas, won $250 with a 13.12-pound catch.
- Garett Chapman and Luke Ruggles, both of Ava, Missouri, won $250 with a 13.11-pound catch.
- Danny Holmes and Brody Meek, both of Gainesville, Missouri, won $200 with a 13.03-pound catch.
- Mike Crosby, Flippin, Arkansas; and Rob Williams, Mountain Home, Arkansas, won $200 with a 12.81-pound catch.
- Jody Smith, Violet Hill, Arkansas; and Greg Brunson, Franklin, Arkansas, won $175 with a 12.76-pound catch.
- Steve and Austin Maggard, of Ava, Missouri, won $50 with the largest other fish weighing in at 5.7 pounds.
- David Rogers, Bradleyville, Missouri; and Laryme Campbell, Squires, Missouri, won $100 for the smallest stringer weighing in at .87 pounds.
Proceeds from the Hooked on Education Tournament benefit WRVEC’s Scholarship Trust, funded by Operation Round Up.
Each spring, scholarship applications are available to full-time students from the cooperative’s five-county service area. To date, the scholarship trust has awarded more than $1.4 million in aid for higher education to candidates who are evaluated on the basis of financial need, overall academic performance, extra-curricular involvement and college acceptance.
# # #
All images are high resolution, and are available for download here http://bit.ly/FishPictures2016