So when the Muhlenberg Mustangs won the statewide Kentucky High School Athletic Association Bass Fishing Tournament last month it was truly an honor worth celebrating for the team, the school system and the county.
"This is really a big deal," team coach Cody Napier told SurfKY News. "This is only the second year of statewide competition, and for us to be the first fishing team from the county to win the state championship since the school system's consolidation, it means a lot to the team."
This Friday, May 30, the team will have a combination championship celebration banquet and fundraiser, Napier said.
"The banquet will begin at 6 p.m. and tickets are just five dollars each," Napier said.
"The main purpose of the event is to honor the team, along with the many volunteers who have helped us get to where we are, and to raise funds for a winning season next year. All proceeds will go toward the many expenses the team has to cover throughout the year. We travel from one end of the state to the other, so there are a lot of expenses each team member must cover. The dinner will feature a barbecue dinner from Brothers Barbecue, a raffle featuring some awesome fishing gear and other prizes. There will also be a silent auction and we'll show video footage of the championship tournament. We hope that when people not familiar with the team see this team in action, more people will become excited about this team and this sport."
Napier said that so far just over one hundred tickets have been sold.
"We are hoping to sell at least one hundred and fifty to two hundred tickets," Napier said. "Tickets are still on sale for five dollars each at Uncle Lee's, and also at the West and East Campus. Tickets will be available at the door, but we'd like to sell as many in advance as possible so we'll have a general idea of how much barbecue we'll need for the event."
For those still unfamiliar with the fairly new sport of high school competitive bass fishing, each school's team is split into two partners in each boat. Mustang seniors Chase Geary and Cameron Brooks brought in the winning total pounds of fish at April's state championship at Kentucky Lake, with the ten fish and a total weight of 33 pounds and six ounces. Mustang team members Jacob Bowles and Hunter Hampton took fourth place in the state championship with a total of ten bass, and a total weight of twenty-eight pounds and fourteen ounces.
"We had some stiff competition all season long," Napier said. "But the entire team worked hard before and during the season, and I couldn't be more proud of them all. For them to have succeeded so well in this new statewide competition is very impressive. We wish Chase and Cameron all the best, and we look forward to next season. This may just be the second year for bass fishing as an official high school sport, but it is growing fast. I have gotten calls from numerous school systems throughout the state this year asking me about the basics of forming a team. So competition will grow and grow, and we like that. It's good for the sport."
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