Archive for September 2014

McKendree Bass Fishing Team

McKendree Signs 11 for First Bass Fishing Team

Lebanon –McKendree University head bass fishing coach Jon Rinderer announced the first 11 signee’s in program history on Monday.

The roster includes freshmen Austin Chapman, of Meridian High School; Charlie Kreke, of Carlyle High School; Curtis Lilly, of Sterling High School; Brian McClanahan, of Elverado High School; and Trenton Robinson, of Lewistown High School; sophomores Reece Ellerbusch, of Massac County High School; and Derrik Starrett, of Alton Marquette High School; and juniors Adam Brookman, of Mount Vernon High School; Elliot Emann, of Washington (Mo.) High School; Phillip Germagliotti, of Highland High School; and Dustin Pendegraft. of Lebanon High School.

“With the end of summer comes the beginning for the McKendree Bass Fishing program,” said Rinderer. “I’m very excited about our new program and can’t wait for these anglers to have the opportunity to participate in a variety of Invitational Tournaments, as well as the FLW and Cabela’s BoatUS Bass Fishing Circuits.

” Our roster includes great fishermen from all over the state and they all have impressive lists of accomplishments that are sure to benefit our team. I’m really looking forward to working with this great group of young men as we get ready for our first invitational tournament at Carlyle Lake, on Oct. 12.”

On March 27, McKendree University announced the addition of bass fishing as its 24th sport. The program is funded by the university and does offer. The program will compete at various collegiate tournaments throughout the midwest and south, and will also host tournaments on Carlyle Lake in Carlyle.

Here’s a look at the McKendree signees:

* Austin Chapman, freshman, Meridian High School in Blue Mound. Chapman was a sectional champion on Lake Shelbyville as a senior at Meridian High School and won the Edinburg Invitational on Lake Taylorville as a senior. He also won the Montgomery Bass Club open tournament on Sangchris Lake as a senior and helped lead the Hawks to a third-place finish in the state tournament on Carlyle Lake as a senior. He .claimed Big Bass titles at the Lake Shelbyville sectional as a senior (4.96 pounds) and at the Hawk Open on Lake Shelbyville as a junior (4.83 pounds). He finished as runner-up at the Hawk Open as a junior…finished in seventh place in the Bass Federation state tournament on Lake Shelbyville and was a three-time sectional qualifier at Meridian High School. Chapman has numerous top three finishes and Big Bass awards in Assumption Bass Club tournaments held at Lake Shelbyville, Jim Edgar Panther Creek Prairie Lake, Lake Decatur, Lake Jacksonville, and Clinton Lake. He finished 2012 with the highest average per bass in the club.

“Austin brings several strong fishing techniques to our team,” Rinderer said. “He is a great jig and worm fisherman, and he specializes in shaky-head and sight fishing.”

* Charlie Kreke, freshman, Carlyle High School of Carlyle. He is a member of the Carlyle High School Bass Club.

“Charlie’s knowledge of Carlyle Lake will be a huge asset to our team,” Rinderer said. “His favorite approaches are fishing crankbaits and spinnerbaits.”

* Curtis Lilly, freshman, Sterling High School of Sterling. Lilly was a two-year member of the Sterling High School bass fishing team and helped lead his team to a third place sectional finish and competed at the state championship. He primarily fishes Carlton Lake and Pool 13 on the Mississippi River.

“Curtis helped Sterling to a third place finish in the sectional and qualified for the state tournament,” Rinderer said. “He specializes in the use of jigs, worms, and crankbaits.

* Brian McClanahan, freshman, Elverado High School in Elkville. He was a four-year captain of the Elverado High School bass fishing team and helped lead the Falcons to championship finishes as a freshman and senior, and runner-up finishes as a sophomore and junior at the Marion Wildcat Invitational championship. He led the Falcons to a third place finish as a junior and a fourth place finish as a senior at the sectional tournament and finished as the runner-up as a junior at the state championship at Carlyle Lake. He was a two-time Big Bass winner at the Marion Wildcat Invitational.

“Brian brings an incredible personal resume of fishing accomplishments to our program,” Rinderer said. “He is very well versed in all types of fishing techniques and specializes in off shore deep water fishing.”

* Trenton Robinson, freshman, Lewistown High School of Havana. Robinson placed fifth in the Thursday Night Bassers tournament at Lakeland Park.

“Trenton’s strengths are jigging and worming heavy cover,” Rinderer said. “He especially loves to entice bass with a topwater frog. He can really make that frog dance.”

* Reece Ellerbusch, a sophomore, Massac County High School in Belknap. He frimarily fishes Smithland Pool and Mermet Lake.

“Reece is well versed in all types of presentations,” Rinderer said. “His favorites are pitchin’, flippin’, spinnerbaits, and finesse fishing. He is fantastic with a little Mojo Rig. His experience on rivers will be a great asset to our team.”

* Derrik Starrett, ophomore, Alton Marquette High School, from Brighton. Primarily fishes Otter Lake.

“Derrik has spent many hours on Otter Lake,” Rinderer said. “His best technique is the jig and pig. We look forward to having his competitive personality on our team.”

* Adam Brookman, junior, Mount Vernon High School, from Opdyke. He competes regularly in Rend Lake Sporting Goods Wednesday Night Tournaments on Rend Lake. He has two top three finishes at the Joe Prusacki Memorial Bass Tournament on DuQuoin CIty Lake and Crab Orchard Lake and claimed the championship at the 2011 Rend Lake Lunkerbuster Bass Club tournament at Rend Lake. He placed 35th at the 2011 Midwest Bass Classic on Crab Orchard Lake and placed third at the Annual Tamaroa Booster Club tournament on DuQuoin City Lake in 2009. He finished fifth in the Pinckneyville High School Athletics Fundraiser tournament on DuQuoin City Lake in 2010.

“Adam’s very confident in all techniques with a special knack for crankbaits and Carolina rigs,” Rinderer said. “He has spent many hours on Newton Lake, as well as Rend Lake. His versatility and experience on Rend Lake will be a great asset as we begin to fish Carlyle Lake, a lake very similar to Rend Lake.”

* Elliot Emann, junior, Washington High School in Washington, Mo. He has lots of experience fishing Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake, Mark Twain Lake, Carlyle Lake, and also various rivers.

“Elliot brings many years of fishing experience to our team,” Rinderer said. “He has spent many hours on Lake of the Ozarks and will be a great source of knowledge when we head to this lake. He specializes in structure fishing and excels at pitching a jig and throwing crankbaits.”

* Phillip Germagliotti, junior, Highland High School in Highland. He was a two-year member of the Highland High School Bass Fishing team…helped lead the Bulldogs to a third place finish at the sectional qualifier and a 15th place finish at the state championship.

“Phillip is very suited to both shallow and deep water fishing,” Rinderer said. “His best techniques are jigging and shaky-head fishing. Since completing high school, he has also won many open tournaments.”

* Dustin Pendegraft, junior, Lebanon High School, from Summerfield. Pendegraft primarily fishes smaller summer tournaments at Rend Lake.

“Dustin didn’t have the opportunity to fish on a high school team, but he has logged many hours on the water fishing for largemouth bass,” Rinderer said. “He works hard and is continually seeking knowledge and honing his skills to be an incredible fisherman. He has spent his practice time on Carlyle and East Fork Lakes. His work ethic will help push our team to higher limits.”

Republic High School Wins Missouri Bass Championship

Republic High School wins Missouri Bass Championship

By John Neporadny Jr.

Branson, Mo.— Missouri high school anglers made history by competing in the Bass Pro Shops Open Championship of High School Fishing June 7-8 at Table Rock Lake.

The Republic High School team won the first Bass Pro Shops Open Championship of High School Fishing June 7-8, 2014 at Table Rock Lake.

The Republic High School team won the first Bass Pro Shops Open Championship of High School Fishing June 7-8, 2014 at Table Rock Lake.

The event was the first tournament ever held for high school teams signed up with the Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA) bass fishing program. The tournament drew 103 student anglers from 12 high schools that were paired up with volunteer boat captains each day.

Republic won the tournament with 47 points and collected the top prize of $5,000 in scholarship money. A tiebreaker was used to determine second and third place since both Ozark and Branson finished with 31 points. Ozark broke the tie since one of its two-man teams had the heaviest single-day weight and claimed the second-place prize of $3,000 in scholarship money. Branson settled for third place and won $2,000 in scholarship money.

Each two-man team fished for points for their schools based on the team’s total weight each day. The top 15 finishers of the two-man teams each day were awarded points for their schools to determine the overall school champion.
The tournament also awarded trophies to the top 3 finishers in the team competition. Cody Huff and Colten Levan of Ava High School earned the first-place trophy with a two-day weight of 22.54 pounds. Brandon Durr and Colton Mease of Republic took second with 22.10 and Dillon Statler and Nick Snelson of Reeds Spring High placed third with 21.59. The Big Bass plaque was presented to Ozark High’s Cameron Smith and Austin Thrap who weighed in a 5.48-pound largemouth bass.

Some of the student anglers had tournament experience but this was the first time they had fished in a high school event. “It is a great program,” said Cody Huff of Ava High. “It is just a lot of fun to get everybody out and let the high school kids fish. It is nice to be able to represent our hometown like this.”

His Ava High School teammate Colten Levan also had fun fishing for his school. “I absolutely love it,” he said.
Republic High anglers Brandon Durr and Hunter Gill have competed in various adult circuits and relished the chance to fish in this event. “This is a little different because everybody is our age and we are fishing as several teams for our school,” Durr said. “All in all I liked it and it was a lot of fun.”

“This was really fun fishing with same-age kids and we had a lot of boats,” Gill said. “I just liked it because it was all kids my age so I could actually see where I was in tournaments for my age group.”

Adult volunteers drove the 57 boats used to take the students fishing each day. One of the boat captains, Russ McBurney, has spent the last three months taking the Hillcrest High School anglers to various lakes and teaching them how to run a trolling motor, net fish and tie knots. “We just make time to spend with the kids,” McBurney said. “They are the next generation so we’ve got to get them focused on what the future is going to be. It was just a wonderful time to be with them.”

A large crowd of family and friends flocked to the weigh-in to see the students with their catches. “I think it is amazing,” Romona Scoggins said about the high school bass fishing program. “My son (Tre) has enjoyed it. In the last three months he has gone from not knowing anything about fishing to knowing quite a bit. He just got a truck and now he wants a boat. This is really an awesome thing for the young kids to get involved in a new sport.”

The tournament was a proud moment for Republic High School Coach Jim Huson, who organized the event and was instrumental in starting the MSHSAA bass fishing program. “My heart swells when I see all these kids out here from these different schools,” Huson said. “This is a great start for us that we have had as a vision since 2008. Ultimately I don’t know how it could have been more successful for us for our first year. “

Central Pro-Am Association handled the tournament registration and conducted the daily takeoffs and weigh-ins. This event was also special to the tournament’s emcee, Mike Webb, Central Pro-Am president, who has been running tournaments for 20 years. “None of them are as important to my wife and me as this one just because of the kids being involved. I think this will double in size by next year. This is the future of the sport and I see these people are going to be boaters one of these days and they are going to turn around and do the same thing we are doing now to hopefully keep this ball rolling.”

The Branson Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitors Bureau also sponsored the high school tournament. “We see the event as a great opportunity to support the students and the program,” said Terra Alphonso, assistant director of sports and convention sales for the chamber. “The (tournament) has been well organized. I am impressed with the care for the fish and the safety of the participants.”

Photo Gallery

For all of the results of the high school championship, go to

To contact John Neporadny Jr. call 573/365-4296 or visit his website at