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Casting for opportunities

Nacogdoches Miller, The TrailBlazer

Rowan County High School students are casting for opportunities.

Going into its second year, the Rowan County Bass team is a growing opportunity for those who have a passion for fishing and the outdoors.   

“You just got to have the love to be out there on that water and you’ll get good at it,” said Steve Caudill, head coach for the Rowan County Senior High School bass fishing team.

He said it’s a new avenue for non-traditional athletes who might not be interested in other sports. Caudill added you don’t have to be built to run or meet a height requirement, you just have to want it.

That love is what brings competitors like Caden Pierce, a junior at RCSHC, and Daylan Lowry from Powell County Middle School out to the lake.

“A lot of people they love to fish, and they don’t have that chance to do it in school,” said Lowery, who wants to make fishing a career.

Caudill organizes tournaments every week. Competitors meet at Alfrey boat ramp at the Twin Knobs recreation area of the Daniel Boon National Forrest.

These tournaments offer young men and women 18-and-younger a chance to get first-hand experience on the water and gives teams from the state a chance to prepare for school regionals held in April. If they pass regionals they will compete for the chance to go to state.

Caudill said he wants to see the sport take off for Rowan County and become a chance for students to earn scholarships, like the one offered at Kentucky Christian University. It is currently the only college in Kentucky that offers scholarships for bass fishing.

“We were kind of dragging getting that involved in the school system,” Caudill said, talking about schools that have had teams for half a decade now.

He said high school students were pushing the idea for the sport, but it wasn’t until John Maxie became the super intendent that it became a reality.

“He’s kind of an outdoorsman, that helped a lot,” Caudill Said, not long after he was asked to be the head coach for the team.

Caudill said he is looking forward to the upcoming tournaments and that it’s all about the students getting better.

“It’s more about just getting the kids on the water,” Caudill said. “Practicing, learning how it works and the competition level of it.”

The TrailBlazer is online at: http://www.thetrailblazeronline.net/

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