Recent graduates from Jacksonville High School Luca Thies and Quentin Nebel, both members of the Jacksonville High School’s bass fishing team, finished in a tie for 128th place out of 481 boats in the B.A.S.S. Nationals, a three-day competition that began Thursday, July 27 and ended Saturday, July 29.
Of the 31 Illinois teams that attended, the team of Thies and Nebel finished in a tie for 8th among them.
Considering none of them had ever been to Lake Hartwell in Anderson, South Carolina, they were forced to spend the entire tournament fishing waters deeper than 30 feet. They had no previous experience fishing in deeper water — as they never have to fish deeper than 12-15 feet in Illinois. Their coach, Tony Perkins, said, “Considering they have never fished a lake of this magnitude, I am very proud of these results. They were overwhelmed on the first day of practice, and it appeared that catching fish on this lake was going to be impossible, but they left their comfort zone, worked hard to figure out new ways to catch fish, and were able to finish in the top 26% of the field against the best high school competition in the country.”
Perkins added, “The boys learned a lot and worked hard. They didn’t complain. They endured intense heat. And they were able to catch plenty of fish both days of the tournament.”
Perkins is extremely proud of the two boys for having come a long way in their four years at JHS and says that they will be missed.
A special thanks to assistant coach Glenn Robson for making the trip with them and for taking care of them throughout the week while they worked hard to catch fish.