With three returning senior starters and a fourth senior to round out the pack, the Highland High School bass fishing team reeled in the top two spots at the 2016 IHSA Bass Fishing Sectional at Coffeen Lake. It was the seventh consecutive year that a Bulldog boat has captured a sectional crown.
In a field that included 12 schools and 22 boats, Highland’s No. 2 boat featuring Alec Rebbe and Jake Freeman, with assistant coach Scott Sautman serving as the boat captain, took first place with a five-fish limit weighing in at 13.52 pounds. Freeman also captured the big bass honors of the tourney with a lunker bass tipping the scales at 4.23 pounds.
Blake Schumacher and Hampton DuFrain, in Highland’s No 1 boat piloted by head coach Jon Rinderer, finished in second place with a five-fish limit weighing in at 12.97 pounds.
Team alternates were sophomore Lake Bircher and freshman Colton Brown.
Only the top three boats from each sectional tournament advance to the IHSA Bass Fishing State Finals, which will be held May 20-21 at Carlyle Lake.
Mount Olive finished third at the Coffeen Lake Sectional with 11 pounds and will join Highland’s two boats at the IHSA Bass Fishing State Finals at Carlyle Lake, which will host the 66 qualifiers from the 22 sectionals that were held across the state.
Mount Olive featured anglers Jake Bennette, Justin Bywater and Neali Lewis and the team’s qualifying boat was driven by head coach Bob Wyatt.