ROGERSVILLE — It was not a good day to be a bass Saturday in Cherokee Lake as 72 teams took to the water for the Hawkins County Rescue Squad’s 28th annual Ralph Stanton Memorial Bass Tournament at the Quarryville Boat Ramp near Rogersville.
First place went to the team of Travis Carpenter and J.R. Henard, who pulled out 16.8 pounds of bass.
The tournament is the biggest and most important fundraiser of the year for the rescue squad, so instead of canceling due to COVID-19 concerns they carried one with a few added precautions.
For example, social distancing guidelines were required both on and off the water, and particularly during onsite registration. Also, there were no check presentations for the winners. The winners’ checks will be sent by mail.
Last year, there were 65 boats. Event organizer Lt. Cory Young said Saturday’s turnout of 72 boats was one of the biggest they’ve had for the event in several years.
“I think we had a good turnout because fishing and the lakes are some of the few things open people can still go to,” Young said. “I believe that people just believe in fishing the tournament just to help us better our agency.”
Competitors could weigh up to five fish, and there were awards for 1st-4th place overall weight and Lunker Cash Awards.
Shaun Ramsey and Dustin Buckner placed second with 16.3 pounds; followed by Gary Pilkenton and Clifford Bunch with 15.11 pounds; and Rodney Kite and Bryson Blevins with 14.13 pounds. The big fish of 4.11 pounds was caught by Bryce Stone and partner Slade Hickman.
A total of 38 teams choose to weigh in. The final results can be seen in the photo gallery of the online version of this article at www.timesnews.net
Sponsors who helped make this year’s event possible included:
Platinum sponsors: Ballad Health, Luttrell Staffing/Utility Staffing-Rogersville, Christian-Sells Funeral Home-Rogersville, JJM Transport-Bulls Gap, Rocky Top Grafix-Newport.
Gold sponsor: Rural Health Services Consortium Inc-Rogersville
Silver sponsors: Rogersville Electric Supplies-Rogersville, Hamilton and Long Tax Service-Rogersville, Rogersville Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, Holston Electric and Holston Connect-Rogersville, ABB-Rogersville, U-Save Drug Store-Rogersville.
Bronze sponsors: Henard’s Lumber Co.-Rogersville, Hartness Insurance Agency-Rogersville, Smith Auto Parts-Rogersville, and Sherry Price State Farm Insurance-Rogersville.