The Magnificent Seven
This year, the Texas High School Bass Association held its State Championship at legendary Sam Rayburn Reservoir. The largest lake wholly in the State of Texas at 114,900 acres, “Big Sam” is one of the premier destinations for serious Bass Anglers in the Country.
The Season began back in September, with over 250 High School Programs from 9 Divisions and 3 Regions vying for the same thing, to be crowned the 2022-2023 THSBA State Champions. Much like Golf, the State Championship is like two tournaments in one. You have Individual Teams, normally made up of 2 Students, but sometimes one, competing to be the Individual State Champions. Then, there is also the School or Program State Champions, which are crowned after compiling each Programs top 3 team’s total weight from 2 days of competition.
MISD had 7 Teams which earned their berths in the State Championship by surviving a grueling Divisional schedule, and being in the top 40% in the Division to advance to the Regional Championship. Then, at the Regional Championship, they needed to be in the top 30% to move on to the State Championship, hence they were dubbed the “Magnificent Seven.”
After day one, the MISD Fishing Team was sitting firmly in 2nd place, and within striking distance of 1st place. Our top 3 Teams were led by reigning Houston Division Anglers of the Year Curtis McCauley and Nate Millner, who brought in a 5 fish limit of 14.70 pounds, landing them in 8th place out of over 200 Teams. They were followed by Beau Massey and Wyatt Lanier who brought in a 5 fish limit as well, tipping the scales at 11.60 pounds, putting them in 32nd place. Following them up in the 33rd spot was the Team of Dallas Copeland and Evan Franks, bringing 11.51 pounds, which gave MISD a total combined weight of 37.81 pounds on 15 fish. In all, 5 out of the 7 Teams representing MISD brought in 5 fish limits, with the other two not out of the mix, bringing in solid weights as well.
Day two began much like the first day, with below average air temperatures due to cloud cover, and a northeast breeze. This would benefit many anglers in the field, as after day one, most stated that “catching a 5 fish limit was not too much trouble, but catching any fish with size was.”
There was anticipation in the air as thick as the cloud cover for the day two weigh-in, as much was at stake. On the line would be 75K in scholarships to the top individual teams in the field, as well as the coveted first place trophy for the school state champions.
As the weigh in progressed, it became apparent that there were two Teams that were emerging as the front runners to be crowned Team State Champions, the MISD Fishing Team, and Magnolia. Both Teams are quite familiar with one another, as they compete head to head in the Houston Division of the THSBA, with the MISD Fishing Team holding the upper hand in Divisional competition, winning 8 Divisional Titles in 9 years.
However, this day belonged to Magnolia, as they rallied passed MISD, and earned their program’s first THSBA State Championship. We have nothing but praise for their decisive victory, where Magnolia represented the Houston Division well, by capturing the Team State Title with a 2 day total of 73.67 pounds.
MISD landed 2nd in the State, with a grand total of 70.66 pounds compiled by their top 3 Teams. The Team of Curtis McCauley and Nate Millner led the charge with a two day total of 25.31 pounds. They were followed by Beau Massey and Wyatt Lanier, who had 23.63 pounds for their two day total weight. Jack Haag, fishing Solo, was the third highest finisher for MISD, compiling a two day total of 21.72 pounds.
This Team did everything asked of it, leaving it all on the water. They practiced hard, and competed until the very end. They have much to be proud of, winning both the Houston Division, as well as the Regional Championship, as well as finishing 2nd out of over 250 programs from around the State.
These Anglers represented themselves, their families, their respective schools, and the School District of Montgomery in a most positive manner. They are fine examples of the District Vision to “Be One Team,” where students from Montgomery and Lake Creek High Schools collaborated, showing all of the State of Texas, how great Montgomery is. They were truly, the “Magnificent Seven.”