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Bass Club finds success, helps scholarship fund

Nov. 4, 2010

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Courtesy Photo
From left: West junior Joseph Garland and Waco junior Brian Bauer placed 10th in the Texas Regional Championship tournament.

By Sara Tirrito
Staff Writer

Two officers of the Baylor Bass Club reeled in a 10th place win in the Texas Regional Championship tournament on Oct. 28 and 29 at Sam Rayburn Lake.

West junior Joseph Garland and Waco junior Brian Bauer weighed in 11 fish for a total of 24 pounds, just three pounds short of what it took to qualify for the national championship this year. Garland and Bauer are the club's president and vice president, respectively.

Garland and Bauer also placed second at the Texas Collegiate Bass Championship on Lake Belton on Oct. 23.

The two initially felt like they had a chance of winning last week's regional tournament, but 20 mph winds that came up over the weekend threw off their strategies and pushed the fish away from the areas they were fishing, Garland said.

"When that norther came through, it pretty much changed everything we were on," Garland said. "We pretty much had to go out there and just wing it."

Although the team didn't qualify for the nationals, Bauer said qualifying for the regional tournament was an accomplishment in itself.

"We obviously would like to have qualified for the national championship, but one thing I don't think people realize is it takes a lot of time and practice to even get to the regional and that regional is the 20 best teams from Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana," Bauer said. "It was a moral victory."

Bauer said he is confident in the team's ability to qualify for the national championship next year.

"We put in a lot of time and this was basically our first year to fish together and we learned quite a bit," Bauer said. "So I think the experience we gained this year will help us to get to the national championship next year."

The team qualified for the regional tournament this year by placing fourth in a Toledo Bend Lake tournament in June.

At that tournament, the two won $3,000, half of which was put toward Baylor's general scholarship fund. Garland said being able to help other students with the money they win is a special opportunity for a student organization.

"When we do well, it helps out everybody on campus because when we win money everybody benefits because it goes into the general scholarship," Garland said. "It gives us an opportunity most students don't have."

San Diego freshman Tyler Torwick, who is the club's sponsorship director, said that while he is glad the money can help to support students at Baylor, he wishes the club had greater support from the university.

"I kind of wish Baylor would back the club a little more seeing as we do have the opportunity to win the money, but I think it's a good thing, especially seeing as how it goes back to student scholarships because we're the ones that create the club and organize it," Torwick said. "So I think it's good that it goes back to students rather than some other aspect of the university."

The club, which currently has 15 members, is still looking for more students to join.

Club meetings are about once every two weeks. The next meeting will be Nov. 11 in the Bill Daniel Student Center.

For further information, contact Garland at Joseph_Garland@baylor.edu.