Florida Tournament Report

General Sumter eludes Lakeland Junior Bassmasters anglers


General Sumter avoided the young anglers of the Lakeland Junior Bassmasters during their event at Lake Panasoffkee, where 56 anglers of the B.A.S.S. Nation affiliate set out to hunt down the tagged eight-pound bass worth $10,000.00.

Each year 100 tagged fish are released into Lake Panasoffkee with values ranging from $50 to the grand prize, General Sumter, valued at $10,000. The contest, sponsored by Sumter County Tourism, has inspired several fishing tournaments, including the annual “General Sumter’s Last Stand” held in April.

Bryce Goff topped the younger division with an 8.67-pound bag. With the win, the reigning Angler of the Year in the younger division took over the lead in the points race by less than two points.

Trenton Bennett came close to finding General Sumter, but his 8.33-pound TrophyCatch lacked the tag attached by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission. Bennett’s lunker did, however, net him a second place finish and the Big Bass award.

“I was reeling my Skinny Dipper over a mat,” Bennett recollected of his catch. “I knew it was a big fish as soon as she at it.”

Shane Schmucker with his 6.70-lb. kicker

Shane Schmucker with his 6.70-lb. kicker

Sammy Acree finished in third place with 7.60 pounds, followed by Stanley Flesherin fourth place with 3.45 pounds, and Brayden Becker in fifth place with 3.26 pounds.

Shane Schmucker swept the older division with an 8.97-pound bag. His catch was anchored by the division’s Big Bass, a 6.71-pound kicker.

Richard Vennum finished in second place with 8.95 pounds. Third place was awarded to Chase Dimotta with a 6.70-pound bag. Tyler Jouppi followed behind in fourth place with 5.82 pounds, along with Austin Britt in fifth place with 5.51 pounds.

The Lakeland Junior Bassmasters finish their season at the Harris Chain of Lakes on October 3rd. For more information, visit www.lakelandjuniorbassmasters.com.

Photos: Lakeland Junior Bassmasters

Main photo: Trenton Bennett of Fort Meade with an 8.33-pound lunker