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The excitement for this season kickoff event started a little earlier than expected last week. On Thursday prior to the event, North Louisiana anglers woke up to the third straight day of hard rainfall. That constant reminder that conditions were changing fast on the water coupled to facebook posts stating that mandatory no wake zones were going into effect left the future of the weekend uncertain. It was simple. There was no way that we could have a competition on a lake that was out of its banks with a no wake zone prescribed. "Mystery tournament".. is the way one of our anglers rightly described it on social media. 

By the grace of God, the rain stopped and the water had fallen below the flood zone level by beginning of official practice Friday morning. The meeting Friday night was a warm and welcomed sight for most the teams who had practiced. Most of the teams I talked to said that they either had no bites at all or only a few. We enjoyed some of the most delicious gumbo, salad, and and roles that the fine ladies and gentlemen of Ebeneezer Baptist church graciously provided. 27 of the 28 competing teams attended the Friday night meeting. Nathan Buckles with Teen Challenge brought an inspirational message about how to step up and be the person God challenges us to be. Three individuals that night made a decision to rededicate their life to God.

Saturday morning started out Chilly blastoff on Caney Lake with air temperatures in the low thirties. Fishing was still tough for a lot of our teams. 9 of the 28 teams were able to catch the limit of 5 fish. Congratulations to our winners: Michael Colvin and Aaron Branch for their sack of fish weighing 29.64 pounds! Michael and Aaron also won big bass with a 10.17 pound monster. That fish plus another double digit bass along with the three “smaller ones” was more than plenty to earn them total winnings of $1,715. At least once they caught two fish on one cast… and one of the 10 pounders was caught on a “rusty jigging spoon”. 2nd place was taken by Jarred Fitch and BJ Adams. Congratulations to Jarred and BJ for your very impressive 19.16 stringer, and your payout of $745. Third place was claimed by Lane McGaha and Chase McCullin with 17.82. 4th was taken by Nick LaDart and Allen Anders with three fish that went 17.28 pounds. One of them was 9.42 pounds and two of the three fish they weighed in were caught right before the weigh in. It pays to fish to the end! Larry Pardue and Jeff Neatherland took the last check of the day with their impressive limit of 14.98 pounds. All of the placing teams with the exception of the winners reported that they were fishing in shallow water.  Congratulations to all of these teams.

Great Job Zach and father Tom McMillan for your 7.39# stringer which includes a 6.25 # hawg. Tom and Zach won the first ever Jon Richardson Award which got them a $150 check and memory that will last forever. Just for the record, 13 year old Zach caught the biggun. This is a new special award that is awarded to the highest finishing adult/ Jr team. made possible by the Richardson family. 

Huge thanks to Ebeneezer Baptist church for sharing your facilities and providing a delicious meal. Also Huge thanks also to Mr. John and Mrs. Esther for hosting us at “ The Bateaux”. And for opening up early so that we could get a hot meal.

I want to say a special thanks to all of our local sponsors for the investment you have made into this trail, and these anglers : Go see Brent Crawford for your financial planning- Crawford Financial, Mark Graham  with Graham Properties, and Natalie Richardson to find out more about  “Next Right Thing”.

Also,

Fishers of Men would like to thank all of our fine sponsors; BassCat Boats, Mercury, Berkley, Abu Garcia, Spiderwire, Shakespeare,   Power-Pole,  T&H Marine, BassBoat Technologies, Amphibia Eyewear, Gator Guards, FroggToggs and Jacobs Glass



Roster Information:

Stren

Caney Lake - 02/22/20



Michael and Aaron with their 1st place sack includes twin 10 pounders



Adams and Fitch show off their sack of 19.16



Lane and Chase with 17.82



4th place with only three? that's right when one of them is 9.42



Pardue and Neatherland weigh in a respectable 14.98



Michaels Interview