Student anglers earn $26,000 at Brody Bates Youth Redfish Open

Brody Bates
Aden Day won $6000 for winning the middle school division of the Brody Bates Youth Redfish Open on April 10, 2021.

Twenty teams fished the Brody Bates memorial event

Middle schooler Aden Day and High schooler Ashton Rouhselang, both of Conway, S.C., each won $6000 for winning their respective divisions in the Brody Bates Youth Redfish Open on April 10. The second annual event to honor the memory of Brody Bates awarded a total of $26,000 in scholarship money.

Twenty boats launched from Buck Hall in Awendaw at first light. The majority headed north on the Intracoastal Waterway. An overcast sky with mild winds coupled with a falling tide provided a perfect opportunity for anglers to fish with a choice of techniques. Some used artificial lures, while others chose live or cut bait.

Once the sun came through around 9 a.m., the tournament director’s phone began receiving photos of smiling kids holding redfish.

“I talked one of our best bass anglers into giving this tourney a try, and I don’t know who was smiling more, Gavin Porter or myself when his picture came through,” said Capt. Rayburn Poston, director of the Student Angler League Tournament Trail (SALTT).

Weigh in scales were open all day, and around 1:30 p.m., boats began coming in as the winds increased and light rain began falling. Teams, including the captain, enjoyed gift packages of hats, decals, and a back sack from Sportsman Boats, as well as some of the finest sandwiches from Sewee Outpost.

The fish bit well for all anglers

While only half the fleet made it to the scales, the other half had no complaints, catching redfish most of the day that were either shorter or longer than the 15- to 23-inch slot.

Ryan Marsh of Georgetown County Fellowship of Christian Athletes provided an inspiring message. Russ Tomlinson, general manager of Sportsman Boats handed out awards alongside Coleman Bates, Brody Bates’ father.

Middle School Division

  • 1st: Aden Day of Conway; two fish at 8.81 pounds ($5000), plus $1000 for Big Fish (4.47 pounds)
  • 2nd: Clara Harry and Tripp Inabnit of Conway; two fish at 7.61 pounds ($4000)
  • 3rd: Conrad Beglin and Hampton Ervin of Waccamaw; two fish at 6.38 pounds ($3000)

High School Division

  • 1st: Ashton Rouhselang of Conway; two fish at 7.96 pounds ($5000), plus $1000 for Big Fish (4.05 pounds)
  • 2nd: Ruby Moore of Conway; two fish at 7.02 pounds ($4000)
  • 3rd: Eli Johnson of Conway; two fish at 6.78 pounds ($3000)

For anyone interested in youth fishing for redfish or bass, SALTT has two tournaments left this school year in Georgetown, S.C. You do not need a team at your school to participate. Check out the details at www.salttfishing.com

—-Details and photos provided by Capt. Rayburn Poston, SALTT

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