Jason Larson Claims Victory in Season 2 Opener
Sept 15, 2018 Harker Heights, Texas – Stillhouse Hollow Lake played host to the season opener of the second season of the Pro Am Bass Trails (PABT). The catch, weigh, and immediate release format modeled after Major League Fishing’s (MLF) popular television show pits anglers against the clock and against each other forcing them to adjust to fishing conditions on the fly.
This season’s opener brought with it several changes that are being cautiously received at the grassroots level. The nine angler field struggled against the lakes extremely low water level and the 30 plus anglers competing in an adjacent tournament at the same time.
PABT’s new scoring system has changed from the minimum 10” scoreable limit. To be scoreable, a bass is now required to be at least 1 lb and over. Periods One and Two only yielded 6 scoreable fish. The expected low pressure system kept itself at bay, leading to partially cloudy skies, and a gentle breeze resulting in mild chop across the angling battlefield.
Period three came with it the surprise of schooling bass near the launching point. The angler’s fortunate enough to observe the feeding activity capitalized. Where a total of 29 fish were caught within mere feet of the shoreline in the final session. Angler cooperation and competition was in full effect as angler Jason Larson outpaced the field to score a total of 11 fish weighing 14 lbs. 8oz. This earned Mr. Larson 1st Place worth $540.00 in prize money. In addition Mr. Larson has earned a berth into the championship round. In order to solidify his championship berth, he must fish or pay the registration fees for the requisite four out of six rounds.
The second and final paid place went to Craig Gilbert with a weight of 8 lbs. 04oz. across six fish. Taking home $360.00 in prize money. Returning season one champion Michael Provenzano came in third only two pounds behind Craig Gilbert with 6 lbs. 12 oz.
The $90.00 Big Bass payout went to Frank Sharkey for his smallmouth bass weighing 3 lbs. 04 oz. (One of two scorable fish that was caught by Mr. Sharkey.)
PABT team consisted of director’s John Zavala and Greg Boik who spearheaded the event along with the assistance of the Dave Terre. The PABT team provided grilled food that was available during the angler’s second period break.
“Change is inevitable, not everyone will like the changes we’ve put in place, but the people who want to fish will fish.” – Director Boik stated upon the conclusion of the event.
The trail this season is incorporating new avenues to build funds for the championship for the current season. Some include a tracker built into their website so anglers can see the growth of championship payout, and an official’s appreciation fund.
The second round of the Texas Solo Division will take place on November 10th, 2018. True to MLF fashion the anglers are not notified of the next events lake until the lake goes off limits. Current registered members are notified prior to the general public when registration becomes available.