The North Dakota State Championship was held Saturday, August 14, 2021 at Lake Audubon. It was a beautiful day for fishing! The skies were sunny and clear with a cool temp of 58 degrees at launch, but temps heated up throughout the day to a warm 95 at weigh-in.
1st Place and 3-Time ND State Champions –Team Bullinger – Logan and Ryan Bullinger weighed 5 bass at 16.47 pounds. Team Bullinger had a new teammate this year. Ryan Bullinger, 7th grader and younger brother to Logan, moved up to the high school team now that their older brother, Brandon, graduated. Team Bullinger earned their spot at the 2022 National Championship next Summer and are very excited to compete at that level again.
2nd Place went to Brayden Selzer and Austin Janz weighing 5 bass at 16.10 pounds. Selzer and Janz held the lead during weigh-in until the very end and fell short by just ounces.
3rd Place went to Alex Martel and Evan Hendrickson weighing 5 bass for 15.96 pounds. Martel caught the biggest bass of the state championship weighing 4 pounds.
All teams and anglers did a great job keeping all bass alive – not one bass was lost! Thank you to all parents and boat captains for helping these student anglers compete at the North Dakota High School Fishing State Championship.
The weather was wet and overcast but the fishing was excellent. All teams were able to bring in sizable 5 fish limits. The smallmouth fishing was hot to start the morning as most teams opted for the quick limit. As the clouds broke with about 2 hours left, the teams shifted to the largemouth bite with most teams able to upgrade size.
The team of Brenton Vinton and Chase Martin came out on top with a huge limit of fish that weighed 18.5 pounds, fishing early for smallmouth and then going for largemouth late in the morning.
Last year’s champs, Andrew Goodrich and Matt Safer, straight off their good finish at Lake Hartwell came in second with a five fish limit of 16.8 pounds.
In third place, the always consistent team of Jake Labelle and Hunter Navari with a five fish limit of 16.2 pounds. Jake and Hunter said they were going to swing for the fences and were on a good largemouth bite but the overcast morning slowed their flipping bite.
Baits of choice were drop shot and topwater Ned rigs for the smallmouth bass. Most of the largemouth came off flipping baits and bladed jigs. Overall every team’s skillsets showed as many teams caught fish in a multitude of ways. All teams were greeted with many spectators at the weigh-in and the local news broadcast.
Huge Thanks goes out to all the parents and boat captains!