Joe Grafeman learns from boating partner

Joe Grafeman
Joe Grafeman
Joe Grafeman

Learning as a co-angler in adult tournaments

By Joe Grafeman

Tournament fishing is an amazing sport. It is a sport that is really growing a lot.

Many major sponsors are getting involved in the sport. I can remember my first tournament. It was the Big Bass Bash on Lake of the Ozarks. I fished this event when I was 13 years old. I won a couple hundred dollars and I was very excited because I won money in a tournament with more than 2,000 anglers. That is what started to fuel the fire for me.

Ever since that day I knew what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I started fishing as many tournaments as I could. There is a lot of options in tournament fishing ranging from the High School tournaments to the professional Bassmaster Opens.

I started fishing high school tournaments and did really well. I won the Missouri State Championship and was fortunate enough to be on the first ever Bassmaster High School All American Team. I then later started to fish the BFLs as a co-angler. I really enjoyed that. This is my second year fishing the BFLs.

Fishing as a co-angler has really helped me in high school tournaments also. When you are fishing as a co-angler you have to be prepared and ready to fish on the fly. The pro you are fishing with makes the decisions. Being able to fish on the fly and make quick desicions is what it takes to make a good team. When fishing as a team it is important to be able to get along with your partner and fish confidently in every situation. I would recommend fishing the BFLs and High School Tournaments when you start competing in tournaments.