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Local students win bass fishing high school state championship

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ORRINGTON Brewer Lake in Orrington was the site of the 2014 SAF Maine State High School Bass Fishing Championship on Saturday, July 19, 2014. The fishing duo of Hunter Pate and Jacob Gauvin captured the title with a weigh-in of 10.8 pounds. This win qualifies them for the conference championship level.

Hunter Pate of Orrington is a senior at John Bapst Memorial High School. Jacob Gauvin of Bucksport is a junior at Bucksport High School. Both young men have been fishing competitively for the past two years with adults in the Bangor Bass Club and the Outcast Bass Club. The team has previously won the Penobscot River Tournament in 2012, the Silver Lake tournament in 2013 and placed in several other tournaments. They are currently in the top 10 Tournament of Champions trail with the Outcast club.

The state championship is a two-person team event for students in grades 9-12. The Student Angler Federation (SAF) is part of the Bass Federation (TBF) and is in partnership with the Fishing League Worldwide (FLW ).

'State championships allow every SAF member in North America the opportunity to fish in a championship tournament setting,' TBF National Youth Director Mark Gintert stated. 'This year, with the help of our partners at FLW, we're expanding the program again by offering more advancement opportunities based on field size. In 2014, the top 10 percent of the field will advance. This rewards areas of the country working hard to grow the sport of high school fishing.'

The top 10 perent of each conference championship will advance to the FLW/TBF High School Fishing National Championship held spring of 2015 in conjunction with a major TBF or FLW event. The National Champions win a $5,000 college scholarship to the school or their choice. All SAF members nationwide and all open and state championship participants automatically qualify for the largest event in high school fishing, the 2014 High School Fishing World Finals. Over $40,000 in scholarships and prizes are awarded annually.

FLW is the industry's premier tournament-fishing organization, providing unparalleled fishing resources and entertainment to sponsors, fans and host communities. FLW is offering anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money nationwide over the course of 230-plus tournaments across five tournament circuits, four of which provide an avenue to the sport's richest payday and most coveted championship trophy the Forrest Wood Cup. FLW is committed to providing a lifestyle experience that is the 'Best in Fishing, On and Off the Water,' through a variety of platforms including tournaments, outdoor expos and FLW Fantasy Fishing.

The Bass Federation Inc., (TBF) is owned by those dedicated to the sport of fishing. TBF is the largest and oldest, organized grassroots fishing organization. TBF affiliated state federations and their member clubs conduct more than 20,000 fishing, youth and conservation events at the local level each year and have provided a foundation for the entire bass fishing industry for more than 45 years. TBF started the Student Angler Federation and the national High School Fishing program in 2008 to promote clean family fun and education through fishing. Visit bassfederation.com or highschoolfishing.org for more information.

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