Fishing TBF Student Angler Federation (SAF) High School Bass Tournaments
Trey Schroeder – Lindbergh High School
After finishing middle school, my fishing partner Grant Nisbet and I started our high school’s first team and went to our first SAF Missouri State High School tournament. It was a great experience to watch the TBF pros and co-anglers weigh in the day before our tournament. We listened as they told us how they were catching fish and in what type of water. It was a tough day of fishing on a new lake for us but we ended up finishing sixth in our first high school tourney.
The following month we attended the SAF World High School Championships and made it to finals on Lake Dardanelle in Arkansas. The Worlds are an awesome experience! It was a fun-filled week of great competition and activities. There were great prizes and over $60,000 in college scholarships. It is amazing to see over 20 states of high school anglers show up to fish, meeting so many folks that love the sport as much as you.
Last year we finished first in the Missouri State High School Championship at Lake of the Ozarks which guaranteed us a spot in the Southern Conference Championship on the Arkansas River in Pine Bluff, Ark. We were given custom jerseys with “Missouri State Champions” labeled on them and fished with kids from seven other states in our conference. We gave it our all but fell short on making the top three cut to move up to the National Championship tournament, which is comprised of five conferences from all over the United States. Making the National Championship would have been a dream come true, as Ranger supplies you with a new bass boat to fish out of for the tournament and you weigh in with the FLW pros on their stage with the chance of winning scholarships to the college of your choice.
During last year’s Worlds in Alabama on Pickwick Lake we had a new challenge. We had never ledge fished before. After the week-long event we were excited that we had learned to catch suspended fish!
This year we decided to go to one of five SAF Open Tournaments to increase our chances of advancing into the Conference again. After finishing eighth in Oklahoma and second in the Missouri State Championship we did not make the cut this year. We will be on the hunt again next year for sure. Our current goal is to advance in SAF High School tournaments to win scholarships and get to the National Championship, where we hope to place!
At Worlds in Alabama on Pickwick Lake again this year, after four days of pre and tournament fishing coming up dry we decided to change things up and lock through Wilson Dam. We ended up with a nice limit for the day. We were pretty excited about learning the art of locking through a dam and fishing another body of water.
Tournament fishing has helped me in more than just fishing. First time I was thrown up on the big stage and interviewed about my catch, it was super uncomfortable! Now after three years of being interviewed I feel a lot more comfortable speaking in public at tourneys, school, etc. I have met and learned a lot while making some great friendships with fishermen at these tournaments.