Three Chicago-area teams 3-4-5: Tight at the top, IHSA bass fishing state finals

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Antioch freshmen Kyle Anderson (left) and Kyle Tepper were third Friday after Day 1 of the IHSA’s 10th state championship for bass fishing on Carlyle Lake.
Dale Bowman/ Sun-Times

CARLYLE, Ill. —Some days, you just have to have the spirit where you’re willing to wade in.

Antioch, Providence and St. Charles North’s Boat 1 stood 3-4-5, respectively, after Day 1 Friday of the Illinois High School Association’s 10th state championship for bass fishing on Carlyle Lake.

It was a day made challenging by intermittent rain and a thunderstorm delay from 9:30-11:45 a.m. Even so seven teams caught five-bass limits. That included Rochelle and Pinckneyville tying for first with limits weighing 9 pounds, 6 ounces

Saturday promises to be a vastly different day with a forecast for sunny skies and temperatures pushing into the mid-80s.

Each team weighs their five heaviest bass, 12 inches or longer. The combined two-day weight determines the finish.

Antioch freshmen Kyle Anderson and Kyle Tepper did not need a limit and weighed four bass at 8-15 for third, even with boat captain and co-coach Ron Urick saying they missed ‘‘two good fish.’’

‘‘Flipping and cranking,’’ is how Anderson explained their success.

‘‘We caught one right as we were coming in,’’ Tepper said.

Urick, a retired Stevenson chemistry teacher, appreciated what the pair of freshmen brought to the water.

‘‘They’re only freshmen but they have been fishing a lot of years together and they’re friends,’’ he said. ‘‘They are just good kids. I hung up a $15 ChatterBait [practicing] and one of the kids took his shoes off, waded in and grabbed the bait for me.’’

Urick, once a noted tournament fishermen in his own right, now said, ‘‘I get more joy out of seeing the guys catch fish, though I still do some tournament fishing.’’

Each boat must have an adult captain who runs the boat. There are two fishermen at any time with up to two others possibly subbing.

Water was in the mid-70s and the Army Corps of Engineers said the level was 444.02 Friday morning, a foot under normal summer pool meaning some cover was out of the water. Reports on where the bass were in the spawning cycle varied greatly.

Providence senior Hunter Dauparas (three keepers) and junior Nick Katello (two keepers, back-to-back) caught fish all day and were fourth (8-7).

‘‘We caught the last one on the last cast,’’ Dauparas said. ‘‘We used buzz baits, spinner baits, ChatterBaits, you name it and we threw it. We probably lost more tackle than fish we caught.’’

‘‘We just kept on,’’ Katello said.

St. Charles North, which qualified both boats out of the Shabbona Lake sectional, had Boat 1 (Reece Rother, Alex Richmond, Ryan Nord) in fifth with a limit (8-3).

Minooka, without senior All-American Alec Berens (at a Bassmaster event), was in 16th (4-0) with sophomore Wyatt Pazdro and junior Allen Spencer. Defending state champion Buffalo Grove, without senior All-American Tyler Lubbat (at a Bassmaster event), was 20th (3-2) with Tyler Frank and Jakub Szydlowski.

Stillman Valley senior Pierce Knarr caught the day’s big bass of 4-15.

A record 290 schools entered bass fishing this year.

Stillman Valley senior Pierce Knarr caught the big bass (4-15) Friday on Day 1 of the IHSA’s 10th state championship for bass fishing on Carlyle Lake.<br>Dale Bowman/Sunn-Times

Stillman Valley senior Pierce Knarr caught the big bass (4-15) Friday on Day 1 of the IHSA’s 10th state championship for bass fishing on Carlyle Lake.
Dale Bowman/Sunn-Times

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