Basskats win big at tournament at Lake Livingston


photo or infographic by courtesy of BassKats

FIRST PLACE FISHERMEN. With the first place award in hand, senior Chad Baker, freshman Garrett Wilson, sponsor Steven Hillard, junior Jules Johnson and senior Dawson Davidson snap a photo on stage at the THSBA tournament in Livingston.

Cast, catch and release. Cast, catch and release. Cast, catch and release. Win. 

The Basskats fishing team had their first THSBA tournament of the season at Lake Livingston. As a team they won overall, junior Jewell Johnson and her partner senior Dawson Davidson placed second for partners, and senior Chad Baker and freshman Garrett Wilson placed ninth. 

“It was awesome, I wasn’t expecting the amount of success that came from the tournament,” new sponsor Stephen Hilliard said. “They did tremendously well, and they killed it. I just want to see us catch more fish” 

The Basskats shared an incredible memory with Hilliard as they watched his reaction to their first tournament.

“They announced third place, then second, then first,” Hilliard said. “The way they pronounced ‘Woodland Hills High School’ made it sound like ‘Willis High School’ and they made third place. So when they announced them, we got all excited. Then they told us the actual results, and then they announced second place, and we lost hope.”

After the confusion, the win meant a little more to the team.

“Then they announced first place and it was us,” Hilliard said.  “We were incredibly shocked. I started screaming, and everyone got hype. It’s something I won’t be able to forget.”

Senior Dawson Davidson also assisted Johnson on her win catching two fish, but only one was legal

“I got excited because Jewell, and I got to whoop Chad and Garrett, but it was pretty amazing to see the pure joy and excitement that came from Hilliard’s face,” Davidson said. “I genuinely thought he was gonna cry.”

Although it was a tough day on the lake for many, senior Chad Baker and freshman Garrett Wilson persevered through the struggle for their team.

‘We didn’t think we would catch anything because Lake Livingston is a very difficult tub of water,” Baker said.

Wilson also did not enjoy the lake, but was still very glad to be a part of the experience.

“I feel confident for our next tournament because now we were able to get all of our first tournament nerves out of the way,” Wilson said. “I just really enjoyed being able to do what I love, with my bestest friends.”

With an amazing start to the season, junior Jewell Johnson came home with four big bass, shifting her and her partner into second place.

“It feels pretty good to start the season off with a win,” Johnson said. “It just makes me excited for the rest of my season.”