WPHS Fishing Team gears up to defend title

Jordan Camp and Seth Edwards show off their fish after a recent tournament
Staff Writer

The defending state champs tune up to defend their title this weekend with a second place finish in the Tombigbee Bassmasters High School Trail fishing tournament in Smithville last weekend.

West Point High students Jordan Camp and Seth Edwards took second in Smithville with four fish weighing 8.78 pounds. Their big fish was 2.72 pounds.

Parker Maples, a home-schooled student, and Peyton Collums, of Smithville High, teamed up for first with five fish weighing 12.08 pounds. They took second place in big fisher honors with one weighing 3.64 pounds.

West Point's McKenzie Bond took third place, fishing by herself. She landed five fish weighing 7.98 pounds. That also was good enough for third place in the youth division.

This weekend's state championship is at Columbus Lake with teams launching from the east bank of the Stennis Lock and Dam Saturday.

One thing to watch Saturday will be how rains earlier this week and more forecast for Friday along with colder temperatures impact conditions and strategies.

"It all depends on how much rain we get north of Columbus. The weather conditions always play a big factor in fishing. The fish should be spawning now. If the temperature drops into the 30s and 40s, those fish will probably pull back out to deeper water. Those are all things the kids will have to be thinking about," explained Tim White, coach of the West Point team and organizer of the Tombigbee Tournament Trail.

"The water is still warm right now. If it doesn't change, it won't be too bad. But if if gets too cold, it won't be too much fun," Camp said.

Edwards and Camp know the second place finish, a win in Aliceville three weeks ago and last year's title put a target on their back. But they are ready.

"Yes sir, we're a little nervous and there's a little pressure, but we're ready. We know more than likely folks will be looking at us. We've been wanting to do back-to-back. It's going to be a grind, cold, windy, not the best conditions," Edwards said.

"But we're used to fishing in tough weather. Jordan won that Open tournament last year in conditions just about like this, cold, raining, windy, at just about the same time of year," Edwards added, referring to his fishing partner.

Both have been fishing for years and get on the water at every spare moment. For Edwards, that's tough sometimes since he also is a starter and lead-off hitter on West Point High's baseball team. But that hasn't stopped him from thinking about Saturday.

"We know the fish are there. We've got some spots where they are. It's just a matter of getting them to bite," he said.

"We're ready, we're excited," Camp said.

They'll be joined by 10 other West Point High teammates, including Bond, a freshman who has placed high in the two previous tournaments this spring as well. She'll be fishing with her cousin, Cole Bond, who attends Victory Christian in Columbus.