LAGRANGE, Ga. (Feb. 12, 2018) – The Gilmer High School fishing club duo of Thomas Chastain and Carter Ott, both of Ellijay, Ga, brought a five-bass limit to the scale Saturday weighing 15 pounds, 5 ounces to win the 2018 TBF/FLW High School Fishing Georgia State Championship on West Point Lake.

A field of 62 teams competed in the no-entry fee tournament, which launched from Highland Marina in LaGrange. In FLW/TBF High School Fishing competition, the top 10-percent of teams competing advance to the High School Fishing National Championship.

The top six teams on Lake Mitchell that advanced to the 2018 High School Fishing National Championship were:

1st:     Gilmer High School, Ellijay, Ga. – Thomas Chastain and Carter Ott, both of Ellijay, Ga., five bass, 15-5

2nd:    Troup County High School, LaGrange, Ga. – Drake Reeves and Trayton Gay, both of LaGrange, Ga., five bass, 14-15

3rd:     Jackson County Comprehensive High School, Jefferson, Ga. – Sam Holley and Jake Holley, both of Hoschton, Ga., five bass, 14-9

4th:     Harris County High School, Hamilton, Ga. – Cal Culpepper, Hamilton, Ga., and Mason Waddell, Waverly Hill, Ga., five bass, 14-0

5th:     Greenbrier High School, Evans, Ga. – Tanner Hadden and Cy Casey, both of Evans, Ga., five bass, 12-11

6th:      Mount Paran Christian School, Kennesaw, Ga. – Lee Rose Koza and Carter Koza, both of Marietta, Ga., five bass, 11-15

Rounding out the top 10 teams were:

7th:     Georgia High School Student Angler Federation – Karston Hopson and Cole Hopson, both of Cumming, Ga., five bass, 10-14

8th:     Greenbrier High School, Evans, Ga. – Jacob Blumling and Coleman Johnson, both of Evans, Ga., five bass, 10-7

9th:     North Forsyth High School, Cumming, Ga. – Maddux Walters, Canton, Ga., and Ryan Jackson, Cumming, Ga., five bass, 10-3

10th:   Heard County High School, Franklin, Ga. – Chris Carroll and Payton Caldwell, both of Franklin, Ga., five bass, 9-6

Complete results from the event can be found at

The 2018 TBF/FLW High School Fishing Georgia State Championship was a two-person (team) event for students in grades 7-12, open to any Student Angler Federation (SAF) affiliated high school club in the United States. The top 10 percent of each Challenge, Open, and state championship field will advance to the High School Fishing National Championship on Pickwick Lake, in Florence, Alabama, June 26-29. The High School Fishing national champions will each receive a $5,000 college scholarship to the school of their choice.

In addition to the High School Fishing National Championship, all High School Fishing anglers nationwide automatically qualify for the world’s largest high school bass tournament, the 2018 High School Fishing World Finals, held in conjunction with the National Championship on Pickwick Lake. At the 2017 World Finals more than $60,000 in scholarships and prizes were awarded.

Full schedules and the latest announcements are available at and

Thomas Chastain & Carter Ott, of the Gilmer Fishing Club, made the best of the early spring conditions at West Point Lake this weekend in LaGrange, Georgia.  As outside temps climbed into the upper 60’s, water temps were still in the mid-winter numbers.  With recent rains in the area, water conditions were quite muddy and finding clear water to fish was a challenge.  However, Chastain & Ott managed to catch a limit of fish that weighed 15.05 pounds to win the SAF Georgia High School State Championship.

Second place and Big Bass honors went to Drake Reeves & Trayton Gay, from Troup High School.  Their limit weighed in at 14.15 pounds and their limit was anchored by the biggest bass of the tournament, a nice 6.03 lunker largemouth.  Rounding out the top three was the Holley Team of Sam & Jake from JCCHS Fishing Club.  Their bag of fish weighed 14.09 pounds.

Fourth thru sixth place honors went to the following.  Cal Culpepper and Mason Waddell, of Harris County High School with 14 pounds. Fifth place was Tanner Hadden & Cy Casey, from Greenbrier High School, with 12.11 pounds and sixth was the team of Lee Rose Koza & Carter Koza of Mount Paran Christian High School with 11.15 pounds.

Several anglers reported catching their fish on crawfish colored crankbaits, jigs, spinnerbaits and Rattletraps.  Most teams were fishing shallow along chunky rock banks, just chunking and winding. With a total of 62 teams in the field, the top 6 teams advanced and qualified for the upcoming SAF National Championship to be held June 27-30 at Pickwick Lake at McFarland Park in Florence, AL.  Congratulations to the Top 6 teams and Good Luck at Nationals.