BOSSIER CITY, La. – Rainy weather couldn’t keep 118 bowfishing teams from 23 states from competing in The U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship last weekend at Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World in Bossier City, Louisiana. More than 58,000 pounds of rough fish, or 29 tons, were removed from eight area lakes and the Red River.
The first place team, Pure Shot Outdoors, harvested a total weight of 600.3 pounds and received $25,000 in cash with each member receiving an AMS Bow. The Texas team consisted of Isaac Avery, Longview, Laramy Barber, Sabine and Hunter Graham, Henderson.
“My teammates and I have fished this tournament for three years and have always strived to be at the top. Last Saturday we were able to put the big stringer of fish together for the win. Hard work and determination from all the team put us in the right spot at the right time. Thanks to Bass Pro Shops for hosting a tournament of this magnitude and allowing us to compete in something all bowfisherman love to do,” said Pure Shot Outdoors team captain Isaac Avery.
The U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship is the largest event of its kind in the fast-growing sport of bowfishing. This year’s event featured the largest competition and biggest prizes in the tournament’s seven-year history. The championship purse included more than $100,000 worth of prizes and giveaways.
A four-man team representing Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma won the Big Buffalo and Biggest Overall category in addition to taking eighth place in the tournament. Team Obscure Adventures’ big fish weighed 73.3 pounds and they scored an overall weight of 365.8 pounds. Their total cash payout was $9,530.
The No Limit team from Center, Texas took fourth place in the tournament and won the Biggest Common Carp category with a 51.6 pound carp out of Toledo Bend. Their total weight of 402.2 pounds netted the four-man team $6,610.
Team PossumCods, another four-man team from Texas, scored the Biggest Grass Carp category with a winning weight of 58.3 pounds and claimed the $3,200 cash prize.
Jordan O’Neal with the Night Stalkers team from Phillipsburg, Missouri was the raffle winner of the TRACKER Boat1860CC Sportsman boat.
The live weigh-in took place at Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World in Bossier City. The top ten teams were:
- Pure Shot Outdoors—600.3 pounds
- Southern Style Bowfishing—505
- Midnight Warriors—491
- No Limit—402.2
- MOKAN Bowfishers—380.6
- Dead On—373.7
- The Bad News Buffs—370.7
- Obscure Adventures—365.8
- Bad Decisions—362.4
- Bad Company—356.2
Competing and advancing conservation
Besides being a fun weekend for participants and families, the bowfishing event provides lasting environmental benefits for area lakes. Bowfishing, combining elements of fishing with archery to harvest rough fish species, is one of the fastest growing sports in the outdoor industry. Unlike traditional game fishing, bowfishing uses specialized bows to target species including carp, buffalo, and gar that plague lakes, rivers and streams around the country. Removing these undesirable species improves habitat conditions for native game fish.
Image #1: Pure Shot Outdoors team members (left to right) Isaac Avery, Laramy Barber and Hunter Graham show off their winning catch totaling 600.3 pounds earning them the $25,000 first place grand prize. The U.S. Open Bowfishing Championship founder, John Paul Morris, holds the first place winning belt above the team.
Image #2: Team Obscure Adventures won the Big Buffalo and Biggest Overall category in addition to taking eighth place in the tournament. Team Obscure Adventures’ big fish weighed 73.3 pounds. (left to right): Tim Anello, Blaine Lotz, Pete Gregoire, Tommy Vaughn
About Bass Pro Shops®
Bass Pro Shops is North America’s premier outdoor and conservation company. Founded in 1972 when avid young angler Johnny Morris began selling tackle out of his father’s liquor store in Springfield, Missouri, today the company provides customers with unmatched offerings spanning premier destination retail, outdoor equipment manufacturing, world-class resort destinations and more. In 2017 Bass Pro Shops acquired Cabela’s to create a “best-of-the-best” experience with superior products, dynamic locations and outstanding customer service. Bass Pro Shops also operates White River Marine Group, offering an unsurpassed collection of industry-leading boat brands, and Big Cedar Lodge, America’s Premier Wilderness Resort. Under the visionary conservation leadership of Johnny Morris, Bass Pro Shops is a national leader in protecting habitat and introducing families to the outdoors and has been named by Forbes as “one of America’s Best Employers.”
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