Fishing: All the glitter and gold

Most people can’t say they have had the opportunity to fish on the professional level, Fishing League Worldwide Tour, of fishing while still in high school, but I did.

Growing up in Russellville, Arkansas I have had the great opportunity to be raised on Lake Dardanelle.

When I was little, I followed my step dad’s footsteps in becoming a great bass fisherman like him. We would go fishing almost every day when school was over and stay till dark. It became a routine that I still follow to this day: eat, sleep and go fish.

My favorite type of fishing is bass fishing and I love catching big bass on artificial lures such as a Carolina rig. When using a Carolina rig to fish, it’s a very slow process. Casting out a long piece of fishing line, letting the weight thump the bottom and dragging that sparkly bug on the bottom is definitely what I look forward to catching my fish on.

My tournament fishing experience started during my freshmen year in high school, and that’s when I fell in love. Being the competitive person I am, I put everyday forward from then on out to getting better at fishing.

‘The Bass Federation’ hosted the ‘High School Fishing World Finals’ – I just had to fish it. From the summer of my freshmen year to the summer of my senior year, I definitely became more familiar with the sport. It was a huge change in standings throughout the years I fished.

When I was a freshman, I didn’t even make top ten in standings; it was so devastating. I didn’t want to go back to school the next year. My junior and senior year you can bet that’s all I put my mind to, finishing in the top ten.

I competed in the Arkansas Youth State Championship on Lake Dardanelle. I was the Runner-Up State Champion by less than a pound in 2011 (junior year), where as in 2012, I fell short again and finished with a ranking of third in the state of Arkansas in the high school division.

It was definitely a huge let down, but hey, that’s just fishing. I just wanted to keep excelling in the sport I loved, and that’s when I thought about life after high school.

The ATU Fishing team held a seminar at my high school one afternoon my senior year and I couldn’t believe I was hearing that college fishing existed. It was great to find out that the college right down the road had just what I wanted: a fishing team! So, it was as easy as that, Arkansas Tech University was where I would attend.

I am a senior at Arkansas Tech University, graduating in May 2017 with a degree in journalism-public relations and a minor in speech communications.

College fishing was a great opportunity in getting involved with others who have the itching urge to go fishing everyday like I do. This is my fourth year fishing for Arkansas Tech, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. Our team is more like a family and that’s my favorite part. Whether team mates have good fishing days or bad, we always have a good time.

Going to college was a great way for me to start competing in the fishing industry on a different level. I have fished several major college tournaments, Fishing League Worldwide: Bass Fishing League, and competed as a co-angler on the FLW Tour.

I would describe myself as a female who has a love for the outdoors that is indescribable. I hope to one day share the love I have for the outdoors with the outdoor industry and people around the world.