The rain did not stop dozens of fisherman from casting their reels Sunday. Over 130 high school students from all of Texas gathered on the waters of Sam Rayburn. Best friends Dillion Harrell and Brendon Reavis have been fishing since they were kids. Their years of angler experience, and love for fishing, is what helped the New Caney natives win The Sam Rayburn National High School Open Bass Tournament. The two boys meet at school and their love for fishing is what built a strong friendship between the two. Harrell and Reavis said despite the dark clouds, wind and choppy water it was a good day for fishing.
"We pulled up to our first spot. Three casts in, my partner catches a five pound fish, he puts it in the boat, I then catch a three pound fish we put that in the boat, 15 minutes later, we caught a couple more," Reavis said.
"We had one of those days that was just phenomenal," Harrell said.
The boys manage to catch 21 pounds of fish in just hours.
"The blue bait is mainly what they were relating to today. Something about the blue with the clouds triggered them to bite," Reavis said.
Roughly around 10a.m. the boy's caught the winning fish.
"My partner goes to set the hook this morning. He sets the hook and he leans in and he goes man this is heavy. I mean she wouldn't come near the boat and I knew it was a sign it was a big fish," Harrell said.
The champion fish weighed in at roughly seven pounds. However, this isn't the first win for the seniors, both boy's have won numerous tournaments and were even anglers of the year.
Sunday's fishing tournament wasn't just fun and games, organizer Mark Gintert said there is a huge emphasis on education.
"We have a great online education program. We stress education through these events. We have the student education angler program, so the highest finishing team that passed a written test online got an award and prize for doing so," Ginert said.
The bass federation hosts about 43 tournaments yearly around the United States. Every year, they give out about $40,000 worth of scholarship money.