Tournament and fish grow in year two

Published 5:01 pm Wednesday, June 21, 2017

The Second Annual Coosa River Catfish Roundup showed steady growth from year one to year two during the event that was held at Higgins Ferry boat ramp on June 9-10.

Four more teams were entered in this year’s competition, which continued its unique 24-hour format.

The size of the teams also increased with the majority consisting of four members compared to the overwhelming two-person teams of a year ago. The results were more fish and bigger fish.

The largest fish tipped the scale at 52.2 pounds, just over 10 pounds more than the top mark from a year ago.

First place went to the team of Conner Burke and Randal Lewis, who caught a Blue Catfish that posted the top weight. Their total weight of four fish was 150.6 pounds.

Burke and Lewis took home a top prize of $650.

Second place went to Heath Oglesby, Hunter Oglesby, Bucky Stevens and Jud Steed from Ozark, while Rick Glass, Courtney Glass, Kevin Morris and Floyd Glass claimed third place.

An interesting twist was that they also gave away a $50 prize for the smallest fish, which tournament operator Judson Akin said did not even register on the scale.

Mother Nature cooperated, as the weather remained picturesque throughout both days.

According to Akin, an estimated 120 people showed up to watch the festivities surrounding the weigh-in.

Another noticeable change from year to year was the involvement of children by not counting them as a member of a boat’s team.

“Half of the teams had a kid accompanying them on the boat,” Akin said. “There were plenty of people giving kids a role.”

A portion of the proceeds that were collected went back into the community. As a result, $1,050 was raised to help the YMCA kids summer camp go on a future field trip.

“Everyone involved seemed to have a good time,” Akin said. “There were lots of big fish caught and we raised money for a great cause. I would consider this year’s tournament a great success.”